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Aortic dissection, aortic aneurysm - The aorta - Life after an aortic dissection

It's almost 5 years since my AD. I had a lot of dizzy spells to begin with, which gradually dimished and became less frequent. However, lately I 've been getting more of them and a few of them are followed by a fainting spell. The first was a couple of months ago. I'd badly wrenched my knee after almost losing control of my motorbike on a slippery roundabout and I'd taken a hot bath to ease the pain. When I got out of the bath to dry myself, I just fainted. The second time was after I'd been walking on Mount Etna in Sicily in April this year. I was a bit tired and dehydrated as I hadn't been drinking enough. I was standing outside a cafe looking out across the car park when I fell to the ground in a faint. The last time was on Monday this week. I was exhausted after having been to Tai Chi classes in the morning, loaded up the car with junk from the garage and taken it to the rubbish dump and unloaded it all, then went to my Cardiac Rehab gym session that evening. I had just sat down for dinner when I became very dizzy and fainted into my dinner plate.

Is this something anyone else is familiar with? Do you think it is AD related? Or just tiredness and dehydration?

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I've had dizzy spells since the surgery over 9yrs ago. Never fainted as of yet. (felt like I would a few times) It sounds to me like the 2nd time may have been exhaustion and dehydration. That first time could be temp change from bath to cool air mixed with some exhaustion. That being said, I  would still call your cardio just to be on the safe side. Can never be to careful.



Hi Gregory,

I have TIAs every now and again, but I have not yet fainted. Sounds to me like you are doing "too much" and perhaps your blood pressure medication is working a little too effectively. Have you lost weight recently?

Like Kimberlee says, I'd at least discuss it with your GP...



Greg, you are overcooking it! That happens to me to when I overdo it. Also not drinking enough fluids will contribute to this. Slowdown... Smell the roses... ;-)  cheers Graeme 

Thanks everybody. I'm learning my lessons and trying to take it a bit more easy from now on. My trouble is, I'm a positive thinker and an eternal optimist, so I don't always see that some things just cannot be done.

Hey Gregory,

I had my AD in November this year. I went into a bit of shock when they told me and post op I was a bit of a mess for about 4 days. I had a fainting reaction for about 4 weeks after. At first it was pretty frequent but it reduced, and as it did I started to notice there was, for me, a bit of a psychological element to it. If I felt a bit worried about something then that made it more likely, not a certainty, but more likely that it would come on. I also started to recognise the symptoms and was able to stop it before it happened. For me the symptoms were ringing in the ears, followed by muffled hearing followed by passing out. I learned to recognise the ringing in the ears stage and basically just lay down somewhere. The trick for me was to get horizontal and get blood into the head. 5mins later I would be fine. For example just before I left hospital I was being transferred to another hospital for a week for some physio (I got blood clots in my leg and had to have a couple of ops). When I got to the second hospital they had messed up the booking and I had to go back to,the first. The first had given my bed away by then and I had to spend the night on a trolley. I felt a bit stressed. I remember getting off the trolley to go to the bathroom and immediately got the ringing in the ears, this went quickly to muffled hearing and I basically ran for the trolley, lay down and waited. After about 5 mins a my hearing came back and the ringing stopped in about another 5 mins. Everybody is different, but if you can find a symptom before you faint, you might be able to lay down and stop it before it happens.

UPDATE: I've had one or two more fainting spells. The last one was at the cardiac rehab gym. I went down like a sack of spuds and was taken to hospital and kept under observation overnight. Nothing was found. A few days later I had a similar experience. I didn't faint but my mind went totally blank. I didn't know where I was or what I was doing there and after a short while I returned to normal but had no recollection of the incident. This time they kept me in for 3 nights but again nothing was found so I was fitted with a ILR (Internal Loop Recorder) to monitor and record my heart rythms. It was discovered that occasionally my heart rate was dropping to 40bpm. I was diagnosed as having arrythmia so I was fitted with a pacemaker. The fainting spells ceased but I was still getting periods of memory loss. I decided to stop taking Nebivolol, which helped a bit, and then I tried stopping taking the medication that had been prescribed to control my bladder. It wasn't working anyway. Since then, no more dizziness, fainting or memory loss ( none that I can remember, anyway LOL)



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