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Articles » NINDS Orthostatic Hypotension Information Page: NINDS
 

NINDS Orthostatic Hypotension Information Page: NINDS

Article title: NINDS Orthostatic Hypotension Information Page: NINDS

Main condition: Orthostatic Hypotension

Conditions: Orthostatic Hypotension


What is Orthostatic Hypotension?
Orthostatic hypotension is a sudden fall in blood pressure that occurs when a person assumes a standing position. It may be caused by hypovolemia (a decreased amount of blood in the body), resulting from the excessive use of diuretics, vasodilators, or other types of drugs, dehydration, or prolonged bed rest. The disorder may be associated with Addison's disease, atherosclerosis (build-up of fatty deposits in the arteries), diabetes, and certain neurological disorders including Shy-Drager syndrome and other dysautonomias. Symptoms, which generally occur after sudden standing, include dizziness, lightheadedness, blurred vision, and syncope (temporary loss of consciousness).

Is there any treatment?
When orthostatic hypotension is caused by hypovolemia due to medications, the disorder may be reversed by adjusting the dosage or by discontinuing the medication. When the condition is caused by prolonged bed rest, improvement may occur by sitting up with increasing frequency each day. In some cases, physical counterpressure such as elastic hose or whole-body inflatable suits may be required. Dehydration is treated with salt and fluids.

What is the prognosis?
The prognosis for individuals with orthostatic hypotension depends on the underlying cause of the condition.

What research is being done?
The NINDS supports research on conditions such as neurogenic orthostatic hypotension aimed at increasing scientific understanding of the condition and finding ways to treat and prevent it.

Selected references

Robertson, D, et al (eds).
Primer on the Autonomic Nervous System Academic Press, San Diego (1996)

 Organizations

National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD)
P.O. Box 8923
(100 Route 37)
New Fairfield, CT 06812-8923
orphan@rarediseases.org
https://www.rarediseases.org/
Tel: 203-746-6518 800-999-NORD (6673)
Fax: 203-746-6481

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHBLI)
National Institutes of Health
Bldg. 31, Rm. 4A21
Bethesda, MD 20892
https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/
Tel: 301-592-8573 800-575-WELL (-9355)

This fact sheet is in the public domain. You may copy it.Provided by:
The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
National Institutes of Health
Bethesda, MD 20892


 

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