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Can you be so sressed or freaked out that you pass out completely?

This last spring I passed out randomly about 3 times in 2 weeks. I was very stressed and had a stomache virus. I went to the doctor and they drew blood, when they did I passed out again. My heart rate dropped so low the doctor couldn't find it and he ordered a 24 hour heart monitor. The results came back with nothing wrong. Just last week I passed out again after having some muscle relaxing treatment done on my back. I was freaked out by how relaxed my back was. Could this cause me to pass out?
Related Topics: Stress, Heart, Muscle, Stomach, Virus

Answers From Experts & Organizations (1)

General Medicine
1,458 Answers
65,088 Helpful Votes
Yes, you certainly can faint from freaking out. If I had a nickel for every patient who fainted from stress when receiving an injection or having an IV started, I'd be one rich nurse!

Frequently, when a person passes out from stress, it's due to what's called a "vasovagal response." This refers to a momentary malfunction of the parts of the nervous system (including the vagus nerve) that regulate the heart rate. Heart slows down, blood vessels dilate, blood pressure drops, and you pass out.

However, you seem to faint more than would normally be expected. Vasovagal syncope (the fancy medical term for fainting while freaking out) usually requires a strong trigger. I would think back relaxation would bring on feelings of euphoria, not stress that causes fainting.

Because you're still having fainting episodes after several months, it's time to go back to the doctor to see if something besides a vasovagal response is causing this.

Also, if you can feel a fainting episode coming on, try to quickly sit down on the ground before you fall. And always try to protect your head.

Best to you!

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