A Case of Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome
A male patient aged 26 years came to our clinic with POTS.
POTS is characterized by:
- Postural tachycardia
- Abdominal discomfort
- Exercise intolerance
The patient had all the above symptoms for 5 years and he was on medications ( Diamox, Propanolol and Amitriptyline) but to no avail. He was unable to drive due to his symptoms and was fearful that he would never be healthy again. His symptoms were making his newly married life suffer too. His libido was very low and he was unable to do even small tasks by himself. He was a music teacher at school and he was on disability, as even standing for short periods of time was becoming impossible. He had been to the Mayo clinic and USC, and Amitriptyline was the only thing that seemed to make him a little better. He also suffered from loss of sleep and severe body aches with the slightest exertion. His headaches worsened as the day progressed and also due to stress and exertion. His headaches started at the forehead and then moved on to the whole head. The sensation was of a vice on the head. He had stomach pain with slow digestion. Palpitations were worse in the evening and tended to keep him awake. He also had tightness in the chest and difficulty in breathing. He said he suffered from severe Infectious Mononucleosis 5 months before the onset of POTS. Generally he feels worse from drinking coffee and alcohol.
His B.P in the sitting position was 120/78 mm Hg, immediately after standing – 120/78 mm Hg and 2 minutes after standing – 138/98 mm Hg. His B.P was controlled by the propranolol, but in spite of it spiked up after he was standing for 2 minutes.
Mentally, the patient was feeling frustrated with life and suffered from anticipatory anxiety. He was withdrawn due to his symptoms and when he needed to do something, he was feeling irritable because of the fatigue. He felt overwhelmed and discouraged about his future and said his life was out of control. He said “Everything seems to be ending before it started.” He had fear of heights and fear of travelling. He is afraid of trying anything new. He had nervous diarrhea whenever he had to take up a new task. The patient’s wife had requested me to not disclose the name of the remedy to the patient as he would get more anxious researching it and hence it wasn’t disclosed.
The patient had a good diet and had eliminated coffee and alcohol from his diet completely. He had no food intolerances, craved sweets and vinegar.
Considering the totality of the patient, he was prescribed Argentum Nitricum 200 C one dose, followed by placebo for 6 weeks. I was surprised by the change in the patient at the first follow up. All his symptoms had improved tremendously. He reported that his headaches, palpitations and dizziness were mostly not noticeable, even though not completely gone. He said that even though he doesn’t feel completely normal, this is the best he had felt in a long time. He had also started exercising slowly and was jogging everyday by the end of 6 weeks. His fatigue was still there, but considerably less with no body aches. He had also travelled to California which had been impossible for five years as he was anxious that he would get caught in the desert from Vegas to California with no help. The patient was generally happy and had driven to the clinic by himself. He also said that he was going through an accelerated program that he had joined two weeks ago and he was handling the stress of that program very well, to his own surprise. His sleep had improved and he said he woke up less tired every day. His B.P at the follow up while sitting was 110/70 mm Hg and 2 minutes after standing was 118/78 mm Hg.
The patient was sent home with placebos and seen again after 2 months. He was doing much better and reported that his symptoms were 90% better. He was surprised that just a few months back he had all those debilitating symptoms. He said he was pursuing a career in music that he had wanted to do for many years, but was unable to, because of the POTS.
The last time the patient was seen was after 6 months from the initial consultation and he had no symptoms of the POTS. I was surprised that the patient was doing amazingly well health wise. Even though miracles happen in front of our eyes many a times, this is one of those cases in which a patient goes from being hopeless to hopeful in a short while and continues to improve and is cured of the problem in a short duration. This is one example why homeopathy is such a rewarding career.