Symptoms of P.O.T.S.
The symptoms of POTS are vast, complex, complicated, and difficult to live with. The range and severity of the symptoms can range from mild to severe and be debilitating. Speaking from personal experience, I have a very hard time managing my body temperature. As a result, I am hot, then cold, I sweat, change clothes 3-4 times a day, have to rotate anti-perspirant because they become ineffective or they make me feel very uncomfortable. And it is not uncommon for me to have to shower 2-3 times a day in the summer because I cannot tolerate the heat even with the air conditioner running all the time.
And in the winter time, I will have the window cracked near where I sit because I still sweat profusely. I am working with my medical team to see if we can find a solution to this problem. It isn't life-threatening, but it does make my quality of life a little lower because I am never comfortable. I am constantly moving to try to get comfortable. I also suffer from chronic migraines. I have migraines every day, and I have tried almost every medication that is out there that my doctor is comfortable prescribing. He is very cautious in prescribing me the newer stuff on the market because there is limited knowledge on the effects it has on EDS, POTS and MCAS patients.
And he doesn't want to do more damage than good. And I am grateful to him for it. He values my input, I play a very active role in my care. I help him help me. I am at the point where I am using injectable medications because all pill form medications are ineffective. However, I just discovered something that isn't a prescription that actually gave me one full day without a migraine for the first time in almost 3 months. I will cover that at a later date.
POTS is a collection of terms to describe the conditions. Breaking it down word by word helps us to understand the meaning of it. Postural comes from posture, meaning the changing of position. In this case going from either laying, sitting to standing.
Orthostatic simply means dizziness or loss of equilibrium. Tachycardia means fast heart rate and syndrome is a group of symptoms that are the cause of a condition.
~Getting back to the subject at hand, here is a list of the symptoms of POTS:
~Chronic Generalized Pain
~Inability to Regulate Body Temp.
~Shortness of Breath
~Getting Ill After Eating
~Severe Cramps During Menses
~Changes in Leg Color Upon Standing
~Cold Hands and Feet
Diagnosing POTS is pretty straight forward. What is tricky is having someone recognize the symptoms and have you tested for it. But being proactive and being your own advocate can be an asset. If you have a disease that is known to have POTS as a secondary disease, it is much easier to get tested than if you have the other two types.
But I can't speak from personal experience on the other two types. If you have had experience with Neuropathic POTS or Adrenergic POTS, please feel free to share your experience on the forum page or on the blog on the home page.
The testing for POTS includes a look at clinical history, symptomology, and a tilt table test. The tilt table test is a simple test. The patient is strapped to special a table in the horizontal position, the BP and heart rate is monitored. Then they tilt the table vertically at approximately 70 degrees. The heart rate and BP are taken again 10 minutes later or within ten minutes.
If the heart rate rises over 30 beats per minute over the rate of the BPM rate when the patient was lying horizontally, then this is an indication they have POTS. In patients who are under the ages of 19, their heart rate must increase by 40 BPM.