Postural tachycardia syndrome in syringomyelia: Response to fludrocortisone and β-blockers
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Orthostatic intolerance is occasionally reported by patients with syringomyelia and is usually attributed to vestibular symptoms or neurogenic orthostatic hypotension. Postural tachycardia syndrome has not been previously described in syringomyelia. A patient with long-standing syringomyelia and a Chiari type I anomaly developed disabling “panic-like” attacks associated to orthostatic intolerance five years after posterior fossa decompression and shunting of the syrinx. A headup tilt test showed an early phase of postural orthostatic tachycardia followed by progressive arterial hypotension and bradycardia as seen in neurally mediated syncope. A magnetic resonance imaging scan showed a collapsed syrinx from the 3rd cervical to the 12th thoracic vertebra without syringobulbia. Fludrocortisone and β-blockers led to resolution of symptoms. Partial sympathetic denervation of the legs in syringomyelia might explain the occasional occurrence of postural tachycardia syndrome. Postural tachycardia syndrome may be included as a possible cause of orthostatic symptoms in syringomyelia patients.
Key wordspostural tachycardia syndrome (POTS) syringomyelia syncope autonomic dysfunction
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