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I sneezed a couple times, coincidentally while syncing my fitbit app.  I was surprised to see my heart rate at 91 while lying in bed, and with resting heart rate of 55.  Google says heart rate should decrease when sneezing.  Very curious!  I'll be mentioning this to neurologist also!  Has anyone here observed what happens during and after sneezing?



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  • 3 weeks later...

Just before sneezing, most people take a deep breath. This increases pressure in the chest and briefly inhibits the flow of blood to the heart, which can lower blood pressure and increase the heart rate. But as you exhale, your blood pressure increases and heart rate, in turn, goes down. At the same time, sneezing stimulates the vagus nerve, which runs from the brain through the abdomen. In general, any time the vagus nerve is stimulated, the body’s response is to reduce the heart rate. The effect of this is minimal, however, slowing the heart perhaps only a single beat.

For most people this goes unnoticed. But in extremely rare cases, sneezing can slow the heart rate or lower blood pressure to such an extent that it causes a person to pass out. In the medical literature, this is known as sneeze syncope. Some people may also have an exaggerated response to a sneeze or cough if they have a congenital heart abnormality,  or if they are taking medications that affect their heart rate, like beta blockers.

So....if sneezing lowered my BP, my HR would increase due to my POTS reaction. 


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