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POTS Medication Question


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I have heard that Celexa which I use to take for anxiety and zoloft can cure POTS or at least make the symtoms go away for a lot of people . Has anyone ever heard of this . I saw this on a site and another question. I am new to this , if I have pots I am not going to die am I ? Everyone sais they dont know of anyone that has died from POTS. Also how long does it last because I had the exact same symtoms 3 years agto and I was transported to the hospital and they gave me 7 bags of fluid because I was dehydrated so I am wondering if I am feeling this way because I am dehydrated. What I am trying to figure out is why I would have the same symtoms 3 years ago and was fine because I think I started zoloft after that. The whole 3 years I never had this problem again until I stopped taking my zoloft November of this past year and started having bad anxiety attacks about 2 weeks ago and now have the fat heart beat sometimes when I stand up. Anyone have any insight. I still think it is either anxiety or dehydration due to previous symtoms and the cure at the time which was bags of bluids through IV . But if it is POTS I will get over it right? And is there anything specific I can do to feel better if it was POTS that is natural.


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chad -

welcome to the site. first, it's important to remember that you don't yet have a diagnosis. thus the following answers to your questions aren't necessarily applicable. like someone mentioned to you in your other post, a tilt table test is "the test" (though no test is perfect) for diagnosis & something to pursue with your doctor. if you do have POTS, no it will not kill you. the symptoms can be very tough to deal with but POTS itself does not shorten one's life. there are other types of dysautonomia that are far more rare that have different outcomes, as well as other diseases/disorders that can have similar symptoms but different outcomes; this is one of the reasons testing/diagnosis is important.

your comments/thoughts about dehydration are something to explore. and something you can "experiment" with to a large degree on your own. if someone is at the point of dangerous dehydration a doc's care is needed as the body may not be able to "recoup" on its own, but usually you can fill up on the fluids yourself with lots of drinking. some of us find that a mix of things other than water, esp. gatorade or other electrolyte drinks, are helpful with this. and caffeine generally dehydrates so is best to stay away from. it's also important to realize that many people - without dysautonomia &/or POTS - might have some similar symptoms if dehydrated enough. so the element of dehydration doesn't autonomatically translate to a diagnosis.

regarding your question about celexa &/or zoloft, SSRIs are a known treatment for POTS & other forms of dysautonomia. many - but not all - find them helpful, and haven't necessarily had any symptoms of anxiety preceeding taking them. you may want to do a search on SSRIs as there have been many discussions on this (the search option is in the upper right hand portion of the screen).

many people with POTS &/or other dysautonomias have lots of waxing & waning of symptoms over the years. almost all of us have fluxuations but some people have this in extremes. for example i have been bedbound at times & at other times able to compete in varsity athletics...an just about everything in between. so if you do have POTS the fact that things have "come & gone" is not out of the ordinary. but again...it's important that you actually get a diagnosis before taking this too much to heart, as things you describe could be any number of things, only one of which is POTS.

regarding the issue of anxiety, POTS &/or dysautonomia are NOT caused by anxiety. having an undiagnosed health condition can definitely bring about feelings of anxiety. and some POTS symptoms - for instance the tachycardia - can have similarities with certain anxiety-induced symptoms. and as is common with many illnesses stressors can at times cause worsening of symptoms, but it's important to realize that anxiety &/or panic attacks are not the same as POTS. both are separate diagnoses that are not always easily managed, and there are some that have both, but they are not the same.

last but not least, there is no one "answer" to how long POTS will last. some here have had it since the day they were born & it is a lifelong thing. there are some who have it more transciently - such as during adolesence or after a virus - and for the most part recover fully. most fall somewhere in between. some have few symptoms with periodic flare-ups & some are bedbound. again most fall somewhere along this vast range of possibility. this depends on many things, not insignificantly the cause of the dysautonomia.

i'll stop my thoughts but hope i've answered some of your questions. a lot more detail on these things & many other questions you have can be found on this site so i'd definitley recommend looking around on the various links from the main page.

good luck,


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"cure" is probably way too strong a word with regard to ANY treatment for dysautonomia. I do better on Lexapro (the next generation up from Celexa) than off, but I'm so far from cured. However, without Lexapro, my guts stop working (gastroparesis).


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