Jump to content

Panic Disorder And Pots


ana_22
 Share

Panic disorder and pots are they related?  

96 members have voted

You do not have permission to vote in this poll, or see the poll results. Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

Recommended Posts

I have been doing some skilled relaxation exercises for a couple of months and I'm beginning to notice a difference. I feel a bit more clear headed and my panicky/head pressure feeling that I get after eating is getting better.

Maybe you should try this. There is a doctor named Walt Stoll who has written some books discussing how relaxation techniques can help to undo many health problems. He says that it releases stored stress from the hypothalamus gland. You can check out his website at askwaltstoll.com. Take a look at the message board and you can get some advice from the doctor himself, as well as other people who practice his advice.

My method for relaxation is just to lie down with my eyes closed and do some deep breathing. I try to do it twice a day. This helps to bring the body into a truly relaxed state.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 50
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Anxiety causes sweating so if there was some relationship between pots and anxiety why is is that some of us have lost the ability to sweat when in fact anxiety should induce pesrpiration? I know your not saying it aply's to everyone but even for those of you who do have pots associated with anxiety, how does anxiety lower vlood volume and how does anxiety cause blood pooling and cause poor vasoconstriction of the veins in the legs from postural changes?

Lately when ever i get an adverse reaction to my pain meds and end up in the hospital they try to pin it on anxiety but when I challange them and ask why is it that the adverse reaction is causing me bradycardia and lowering my heart rate to 42 bpms when in fact if it was anxiety it should increase, they cant answer my question yet they still insist on anxiety, thats how foolish doctors can be, they deny the evidence with their selective hearing just sothey can act like they are right.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's typical of doctors. If they can't find a cause of something they blame it on anxiety, or they say it's imagined. Some of it is the fault of medical schools, some of it is doctors not further educating themselves, and some of it is the fact that many doctors are only in it for the money and status. I have had many doctors tell me that nothing is wrong with me. It's frustrating and it makes me angry that they should get paid by my insurance company when they have done nothing at all. In my opinion a good doctor would atleast do some investigating.

Like lieze said, it's the autonomic dysfunction that causes things like you described, but anxiety can cause the dysfunction. Stress can do some very strange things to the body.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

My anxiety is secondary to my pots. I never,had an ounce of it before I came down with dysautonomia.

That is a very interesting atricle, but does not apply yo me :( I can see my counselor all day long, but will still have pots at the end of the day lol

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is very much documented that people with joint hypermobility or ehlers-danlos seem to have a lot of POTS going on....in that patient population...

Also - hypermobility patients have anxiety as a common feature - and panic attacks as a common feature.... again they don't know precisely why this is - whether it's related to poor proprioception and your bodies not knowing where exactly it is in space - to if it's something else entirely such as genetics..

Just mentioned it because of my doctors that know about EDS - they all give a knowing 'nod' -- but a respectful one -- if you answer 'yes' to anxiety or a history of anxiety .... it is absolutely that common.

So again I see another triad - this one of POTS, hypermobility - and this time anxiety and panic disorder.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 years later...

I had a little anxiety at times felt panicky, but not excessively so, in my earlier pre-illness period prior to 1984. I developed ME when I was 23, after EBV, and seven years ago Peripheral and Autonomic Neuropathy became full-blown. As part of the autonomic dysfunction the POTS appeared. I have read many articles on AN and many state that the anxiety comes on afterwards as a consequence of a damaged nervous system that reacts more strongly to stimuli both external and internal etc. I wouldn't dispute this as I think

I note as I have damage all over my body, that at certain times my body buzzes like when I am stressed, scared, excited and so on. If I watch a horror film my body tingles all over and I am generally very jumpy and nervy and it all ties in.

Our nervous systems do not act the same as healthy people. I do meditate and use self-hypnosis techniques to try and help with the anxiety and panic attacks, but sometimes it's a struggle.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was a very calm person pre POTS, though always prone to palpitations if I overdid the coffee or cigarettes. And I have crazy genetic hyperhidrosis, so it is possible my sympathetic nervous system was always out of whack, but I'd never had a panic attack or been prone to anxiety. Can't say that now. This thing has terrified me and lowered my tolerance of stress to zero.

But I was on benzos for a while so I got to see exactly what was mental, or at least adrenaline-related, and what wasn't. 'Collateral' symptoms were better on the benzos. I found it easier to eat and had less (not none) pains, breathlessness and sweating, when i wasn't standing. Whenever I did have symptoms, it took a lot more for them to scare me. But the basic standing symptoms were the same. So that at least gives me something to say to any doc who doesn't know about POTS and thinks it's some weird form of anxiety.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think my anxiety issues are separate from my POTS issues. I can tell the difference between them. However, I do believe that POTS exaggerates my anxiety and keeps me in a panic state for longer.

Hi Jennifer. How can you tell the difference?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think my anxiety issues are separate from my POTS issues. I can tell the difference between them. However, I do believe that POTS exaggerates my anxiety and keeps me in a panic state for longer.

Hi Jennifer. How can you tell the difference?

Hmmm. Well, I'll try to explain.

My anxiety is usually related to health issues which I think is very normal for us - POTS can be scary sometimes. For example, I might wake up in the middle of the night with weird chest pain or a numb feeling somewhere and start worrying about a heart attack or other serious things - my mind takes off and then I feel panic - heart racing, tingling hands and feet, clamminess. This is definitely panic or anxiety for me. However, I believe that having POTS exacerbates my symptoms and makes my "fight or flight" response "take off and go," faster than someone without POTS. I also think that it is harder for us to get control of the panic/anxiety because of POTS.

When I'm feeling POTSy, I can also have an elevated heart rate like with the anxiety, but I don't feel tingly or clammy. Now, A LOT of times, when I have an elevated heart rate due to just POTSiness, I can worry about WHY I'm having the elevated heart rate, and work myself up into a panic about it.

Does that make sense? LOL.

I do have what I would characterize as functional POTS thank the Lord above so my symptoms of anxiety and POTS are quite possibly different from others.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Here you go.

http://www.panic411.org/#Dysautonomia

My cardiologist diagnosed me, and my internist said it was most likely due to the stress I was/am under.

That article doesn't appear to cite any sources; it appears to be someone's own theory? They are correct in most of the symptoms they attribute to panic, and that they are certainly autonomic symptoms. However most of the time this wouldn't be classed as dysautonomia, seeing as these symptoms are a direct consequence of anxiety stimulating the sympathetic nervous system. Dysautonomia normally means autonomic dysfunction that isn't a direct consequence of, say, anxiety or dehydration or anything like that. It's either a consequence of a permanent underlying condition (like EDS) or idiopathic. There's no evidence, for instance, that something like POTS can be caused by anxiety. Anxiety, unless you're maybe severely hyperventilating at the time, doesn't impact your body's ability to stand or exercise.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 years later...
On 23 January 2011 at 3:56 PM, lieze said:

I just wish I could tell the difference-whether it is POTS or panic.

My episodes don't stop when I lay down, they often intensify.

They feel so real, hard to describe like something isn't working right in my body.

I feel short of breath, my heart feels like it's not keeping up., I get lightheaded, and I feel as if I'll pass out or die.

I get somewhat disoriented unable to focus on things around me.

I am in sheer terror thinking I am going to die.

I haven't really tried to take an anxiety med during I'm too terrified to do that thinking it will be the thing to throw me right over the edge.

Maybe it was in fact an anxiety attack the day I got the false blood sugar reading of 24. My blood sugar was going up but I couldn't tell that. I got symptomatic while it was going up and thought I was going out.

I'm thinking now it could have been panic.

I'm sorry if I got off track.

I wouldn't even know how to begin to differentiate Pots from panic because I can't tell them apart.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Idk if I have pots however I didn't start experiencing pots symptoms until after a series of panic attacks. I'm sure they were panic attacks because I am always anxious before they start, and always thought I was going to die. The sweating, rapid heart rate, etc. Panic. Then a day after a really bad panic attack or after days of consistent panic I experience pots like symptoms. For example, now when I stand, my heart rate jumps to 120 - 160 for days even weeks then return to normal. However, I may have had some for of pots because my resting heart rate is usually 55 - 66. And jumps to 96 - 100 on standing and settles around 88 - 90. 

After I had panic attacks, my resting heart rate is anywhere from 84 - 100. Standing 120 - 160. And races with little exertion. I feel out of breath, chills, blurry vision but no panic like symptoms and all of this is relieved by sitting or lying down. I never had these symptoms until 5 months after suffering with panic disorder. 

 

When I went to the cardiologist, I initially went because of the pots like symptoms but wasn't experiencing any at the time. They only seem to occur sometimes a day after intense panic and anxiety. 

So idk if panic and anxiety can cause pots but I am a 27 year old male who has never experienced these symptoms until after my panic disorder diagnosis. I'm a Hypocondriac after my ex passed from cancer I developed panic attacks so I am certain they were panic attacks. 

By the heart rate standing 120 - 160 is definitely not panic as I am not anxious before it happens. 

So can anxiety and panic cause pots?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I personally do not believe anxiety or panic attacks cause or lead to the development of POTS. The symptoms can be very similar, due to activation of the sympathetic nervous system and release of nordrenaline, but panic attacks are not dependent on body position, nor are they relieved by volume expansion. 

I think in a lot of cases, it is possible that symptoms occurring because the patient is actually developing POTS are interpreted by both the patient and doctor as anxiety/panic. These disorders are much more common than dysautonomia so it is natural to consider these first. The postural component may not initially be recognized or that obvious, especially if like me, symptoms can take a while to subside after sitting or lying down. Some people are possibly labelled with anxiety disorders for years before they eventually develop/are diagnosed with full blown POTS.

Secondly, anxiety and panic disorders are common in the general population anyway, so as with any illness, a large number of people will have a medical history that happens to include these. 

The development of POTS can certainly then lead to one developing psychological anxiety on top of the physiological fight or flight symptoms, as it is scary and distressing to live with such a miserable condition, always fearful of passing out, & the financial and relationship problems that accompany becoming disabled. 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

In my opinion, a true, classic panic attack is a severe autonomic nervous system reaction, probably some sort of cardiovascular event, that is triggered often, but not always, by an acute feeling of anxiety.  The panic attack (and this is such an awful, confusing name for it) is the physical event.  The anxiety is the trigger.  They are not the same event, and don't always even happen together.  During a true panic attack a person does not have racing thoughts of anxiety about anything other than what is happening to their body - which is much more significant than a lot of people think.  Fears of losing control - the autonomic nervous system has gone haywire.  Fear of losing control in this situation is actually a rational thought.  You HAVE lost control.  Sense of dying - this is not unique to panic attack.  The same thing is reported in people having heart attacks, going into shock, and probably other medical emergencies.  Those with panic attacks are battling the same 'it's all in your head' that POTS sufferers do.  There are other conditions also often, but not always, triggered by anxiety.  Takotsubo cardiomyopathy.  Paroxysmal hypertention (Page's Syndrome, psueudopheochromocytoma).  These conditions are taken seriously only because they can be observed and measured - ballooning left ventricle, elevated troponin, elevated dopamine sulfate, etc.   And yes to the poster above, you CAN have an autonomic fear/defense response without feeling any kind of anxiety.  According to Joseph Ledoux, a leading neuroscientist in the area of fear/defense systems in the brain, there are 2 related but not identical pathways in the brain that carry messages of anxiety.  One results in 'feelings', the other goes straight to the autonomic nervous system and results in physical manifestations (heart rate, etc).  Not only are these pathways not identical, they can occur independently of each other.  Some people can feel very anxious but not have any physical manifestations, and it is also possible for your body to have a strong fear/defense reaction without you feeling any sort of fear or anxiety.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, joojee said:

In my opinion, a true, classic panic attack is a severe autonomic nervous system reaction, probably some sort of cardiovascular event, that is triggered often, but not always, by an acute feeling of anxiety.  The panic attack (and this is such an awful, confusing name for it) is the physical event....

Have you ever experienced one yourself? What did it feel like? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm no expert on this subject, but I am under the impression that the line between POTS and anxiety can be blurry.  The cause is different, but both essentially activate the sympathetic nervous system.  I don't think you would be normal if your POTS symptoms didn't cause some anxiety. Even a little bit of anxiety can certainly exaccerbate your tachycardia, especially if you are already tachy from the POTS. 

I once witnessed someone having what I think was a panic attack and those symptoms seemed a little bit different. Hyperventilating was the most noticeable symptom, which I have never had with POTS.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

I totally think they are related and I also believe panic can induce pots. I am proof. I went into a panic attack during a SVT episode and have had full blown POTS since that day. Before that day I was very healthy and never had any of the POTS/dysautonomia symptoms. Now I have dysautonomia with severe anxiety and panic disorder. Can’t tell what is what anymore. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share


×
×
  • Create New...