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POTS return with a vengeance or something else


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Until the pandemic, my POTS Had become quiet, almost gone. In the last few months, I have been experiencing constant exhaustion, dizziness, heart rates when I’m standing and walking up to 165 bpm, oxygen sat down to 84  when walking. I feel so awful all the time, it feels so different Even when I was first diagnosed. The oxygen part stumps me. It’s low when my heart rate is normal and when my heart rate gets high my oxygen goes up to 97. I barely can stand up. Has my POTS returned with a vengeance? Or could it be another issue?  Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

Mady

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@Mady - I am so sorry you are feeling this bad!!! - Yes, it sounds like a flare to me. One reason your oxygen levels could be low is that when your HR goes up it is often in response to less circulation ( from either low BP or excessive vasoconstriction ). In both scenarios the body tries to circulate the vital organs and fails to circulate the peripheral body - meaning there is not enough blood reaching your arms and legs. This will often cause cold hands and/or feet and the oxygen probe used to test your oxygen levels cannot adequately detect your true O2 levels. Sometimes you can use the ear instead, but that does not work for me either since my ears also are cold when that happens. 

What I have found is that often with a flare this bad I had to change or increase medications. Depending on your particular type of POTS you may need a different med, as determined by the physician that is treating your POTS. Also - increasing water and salt intake, wearing compression hose and exercising daily but carefully to your tolerance can improve your symptoms to a degree. When I am bed bound I usually get up every 30 minutes for even just a minute, and I do leg strengthening exercises in bed, as well as crunches to increase circulation and prevent abdominal pooling when getting up. 

It is important to notify your doctor of your symptoms. When I am too bad to get to my PCP he schedules a phone visitation for me, especially during COVID most docs are open to this option. 

I hope you will feel better soon!!!!!!

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