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seb10

Eating Disorders And Pots

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Hey Everyone,

I know this is an uncomfortable subject, and one I can't find information on anywhere due either to a) not being related to one another or :) the silence of a disease like anorexia, bulimia, EDNOS, etc.

I am currently fully recovered from anorexia after about a 12 year-long battle. Lots and LOTS of work. But I'm pretty certain that the damage I did to my body during that time is what caused me to develop POTS. I know many people develop it due to pregnancy, the flu, etc. But I was wondering if anyone else has had to deal with an eating disorder and thinks that might be the reason it came around? I think there could be a possible link -- and something else that should be made known regarding eating disorders.

Ok, thanks all! Take care!!!

Sarah

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I had an eating disorder but had recovered (like you said - lots of work!) about 10 years before my dysautonomia developed. I had a wide range of things that contributed to my dys and I do not believe that my eating disorder played a part at all. That certainly doesn't mean that it didn't affect you though!

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Sarah,

I have come across several notations of anorexia causing dysautonomia and that the NET transporter gene is related specifically to that (possibly a cause?) I just can't remember where I saw it. Sorry. I am glad that you are recovering.

Jennifer

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Sarah,

Glad you are well from your ED now -- no small feat!

POTS can be triggered by "significant weightloss" so it follows that an eating disorder can trigger POTS. I had anorexia for more than half my life and now, even though I am fully recovered and have been for several years, I still have a fair amount of physical problems, including POTS. My own doctor is convinced my dysaut problems are somehow related to my eating disorder. As I'm sure you know, orthostatic intolerance is one of the hallmark symptoms of anorexia and bulimia -- that's why when people have these diseases their doctors check their bp and hr sitting and standing all the time. With most people, orthostatic intolerance is supposed to resolve itself as the person resolves their unhealthy behaviors and maintains a healthy weight without purging. Indeed, OI is usually considered a way of determining if a patient with an eating disorder is recovering or not. In my case, it seems the OI "stuck" for whatever reason. My POTS symptoms started when I was physically ill with the eating disorder, but they did not subside when I physically recovered from anorexia. In fact, although my symptoms initially improved when I gained weight and my overall health improved, over the years I have been healthy from the anorexia my POTS has actually gotten incrementally worse.

But, even though I do believe there is a connection, I also think, at least in my case, there may be more to my POTS "causes" than simply years of running my body ragged with an eating disorder. My mother had NCS symptoms all her life until she hit menopause, although she was never diagnosed with any dysautonomic problems. My sister has what we jokingly call "occasional POTS" - she often feels really faint and dizzy in the mornings, but her symptoms are not as pervasive as mine. So, while the physical trauma of an eating disorder may have "triggered" my POTS, I think I probably had some kind of genetic predisposition or something. After all, although most people with eating disorders develop short-term orthostatic problems, most people do not necessarily develop long-term problems. So... I too feel certain there's a connection, but I'm not sure it's necessarily a straightforward or simple one.

There's no question in my mind, though, that if I wasn't eating properly now it would make my POTS symptoms so much harder to manage. I feel grateful that I was able to fully recover from one disease and the determination I learned in recovering from anorexia has definitely helped me better cope with facing POTS.

-jump

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Hi,

I do think I have seen it published a few places in research that eating disorders can be a trigger or cause of POTS. As for the science, I am not sure anyone knows. But, it does cause a lot of stress on the body, and there are hormonal imbalances etc. so it doesn't seem unreasonable to figure it may have something to to with each other.

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Hi All!

Thanks for all the responses, information, and encouragement! You guys are wonderful!!!

xoxo,

Sarah

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