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Thread: AD episode, I think, but no change in blood pressure.

  1. #1
    Senior Member Imight's Avatar
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    AD episode, I think, but no change in blood pressure.

    I was working at my computer, started noticing signs, dizzy, spots, goose bumps, sweating, hard to breath, then boom my abdomen went super tight and my legs went straight as a board. I got up, cath'd. nope, still going in waves. look at my feet and skin everything looks fine, regardless, I'm incomplete and can feel. I call the paramedics. They get here check my heart rate, blood pressure, they say everything is fine but every time I sit up, boom its in waves again, it only goes away when I lay down on my stomach, head raised as if I'm watching tv. It's a little trick I learned over the years. it seems to help things to stop spinning, relax, stretch my body.

    They decided to take me to the doctor as I'm spinning like crazy, legs are going wild, my left side felt a little numb. but they check my vitals and everything appears to be ok. 110/80 altho one reading was 120/80 but he didn't seem alarmed.

    They used an enema to clear me out, some came out. I asked him to check for ulcers, he did an xray and said I had a little bit of some upper stool blockage, gave me laxatives and sent me on my way. I didn't want any blood work nor to be admitted.

    can you have AD without blood pressure changes? Anybody ever get this feeling from constipated stool? I'm going to stay up tonight and monitor myself, I feel a bit better now, but my abdomen is cramping like crazy, took the laxatives but nothing has happened......yet.


    If I was going to be injured why couldn't it have been just a little lower. This AD business is scary.
    Last edited by Imight; 10-14-2018 at 02:31 PM.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Imight View Post
    I was working at my computer, started noticing signs, dizzy, spots, goose bumps, sweating, hard to breath, then boom my abdomen went super tight and my legs went straight as a board. I got up, cath'd. nope, still going in waves. look at my feet and skin everything looks fine, regardless, I'm incomplete and can feel. I call the paramedics. They get here check my heart rate, blood pressure, they say everything is fine but every time I sit up, boom its in waves again, it only goes away when I lay down on my stomach, head raised as if I'm watching tv. It's a little trick I learned over the years. it seems to help things to stop spinning, relax, stretch my body.

    They decided to take me to the doctor as I'm spinning like crazy, legs are going wild, my left side felt a little numb. but they check my vitals and everything appears to be ok. 110/80 altho one reading was 120/80 but he didn't seem alarmed.

    They used an enema to clear me out, some came out. I asked him to check for ulcers, he did an xray and said I had a little bit of some upper stool blockage, gave me laxatives and sent me on my way. I didn't want any blood work nor to be admitted.

    can you have AD without blood pressure changes? Anybody ever get this feeling from constipated stool? I'm going to stay up tonight and monitor myself, I feel a bit better now, but my abdomen is cramping like crazy, took the laxatives but nothing has happened......yet.

    If I was going to be injured why couldn't it have been just a little lower. This AD business is scary.
    What is a normal blood pressure for you?

  3. #3
    Senior Member Imight's Avatar
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    I never really paid attention. Even til today I don't really know what those numbers mean. and I'm overseas so it's not like I can just shuffle through some old papers either

  4. #4
    By definition, AD requires a rise in blood pressure of at least 30-40 mm. Hg. systolic over your baseline. If your normal systolic blood pressure is 80 (not uncommon in people with higher level SCI) you can be having AD with blood pressure of 120 systolic. Most health care providers (paramedics, nurses, physicians, etc.) are not informed about AD and its signs/symptoms or causes.

    Systolic blood pressure (the first number) is the pressure within your arteries when the heart beats. Diastolic blood pressure (the second number) is the pressure within your arteries when you heart is between beats. They are measured in mm. Hg. (millimeters of mercury).

    An Xray cannot diagnose gastric ulcers, by the way.

    90% of episodes of AD are related to the urinary tract (UTI, bladder over-distention, stones, etc.), and 8% to GI problems (constipation, impaction, inflammed hemorrhoids, gall bladder problems, etc.). The remaining 2% can be from anything that causes your body pain, even at a level lower than you may be aware of the pain. This can include everything from broken bones, pressure ulcers, sunburn, to the labor of pregnancy (for women).

    You should get your own blood pressure cuff and learn how to properly use it. Check your blood pressure periodically when not having these signs/symptoms, then again when you are so you can compare. If you have not downloaded information about AD to show to paramedics and other health care providers, do so and keep it with you. Here are a few sources:

    https://www.christopherreeve.org/liv...s/wallet-cards

    https://www.pva.org/CMSPages/GetFile...8-647d0e7fa130

    (KLD)
    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Imight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    By definition, AD requires a rise in blood pressure of at least 30-40 mm. Hg. systolic over your baseline. If your normal systolic blood pressure is 80 (not uncommon in people with higher level SCI) you can be having AD with blood pressure of 120 systolic. Most health care providers (paramedics, nurses, physicians, etc.) are not informed about AD and its signs/symptoms or causes.

    Systolic blood pressure (the first number) is the pressure within your arteries when the heart beats. Diastolic blood pressure (the second number) is the pressure within your arteries when you heart is between beats. They are measured in mm. Hg. (millimeters of mercury).

    An Xray cannot diagnose gastric ulcers, by the way.

    90% of episodes of AD are related to the urinary tract (UTI, bladder over-distention, stones, etc.), and 8% to GI problems (constipation, impaction, inflammed hemorrhoids, gall bladder problems, etc.). The remaining 2% can be from anything that causes your body pain, even at a level lower than you may be aware of the pain. This can include everything from broken bones, pressure ulcers, sunburn, to the labor of pregnancy (for women).

    You should get your own blood pressure cuff and learn how to properly use it. Check your blood pressure periodically when not having these signs/symptoms, then again when you are so you can compare. If you have not downloaded information about AD to show to paramedics and other health care providers, do so and keep it with you. Here are a few sources:

    https://www.christopherreeve.org/liv...s/wallet-cards

    https://www.pva.org/CMSPages/GetFile...8-647d0e7fa130

    (KLD)
    I have that card, but its in my phone as a pdf, I made sure to show it to them when they got here.

    hmmmm I guess he was just checking xray for impaction and constipation?

    if AD is high rising blood pressure, I thought it can also cause low blood pressure, no?

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Imight View Post
    if AD is high rising blood pressure, I thought it can also cause low blood pressure, no?
    No, autonomic dysreflexia (AD) episodes causes suddenly high blood pressure. Low blood pressure in people with SCI is due to autonomic DYSFUNCTION not autonomic dysreflexia. Related, but not the same thing.

    (KLD)
    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Imight's Avatar
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    I noticed I don't see a lot of information on autonomic dysfunction, nor what to do if struck by it.

  8. #8
    Hello Imight, you might want to have an ultrasound of your carotid arteries and other imaging studies - what you're describing might have been a transient ischemic attack (TIA). My sister had several of them, pretty scary. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-...s/syc-20355679.
    MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Imight View Post
    I noticed I don't see a lot of information on autonomic dysfunction, nor what to do if struck by it.
    Autonomic dysfunction in persons with SCI is generally not something that occurs in "attacks" but is persistent following the injury. It is responsible for problems with temperature regulation, orthostatic hypotension (low blood pressure when sitting or standing), and for some, decreased bowel motility, and sometimes decreased ability of the heart to increase heartbeat rate in response to heavy exercise.

    The symptoms you mentioned above are not consistent with TIA or brain stroke at all.

    (KLD)
    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    The symptoms you mentioned above are not consistent with TIA or brain stroke at all.
    I wonder if my sister was misdiagnosed.

    Whatever's going on, Imight, I hope you are feeling better and that it won't happen again.
    MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

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