Friday, December 28, 2012

TERMS: Syncope


Syncope is the medical term for fainting. It is a sudden loss of consciousness, usually for a short time. It is mostly because there is not enough oxygen in the brain. However, it could possibly be through other reasons. It is also called blacking out.

Syncope is defined as a transient loss of consciousness and postural tone, characterized by rapid onset, short duration, and spontaneous recovery, due to global cerebral hypoperfusion (low blood flow to the brain) that most often results from hypotension (low blood pressure).

Many forms of syncope are often preceded by dizziness and loss of vision (temporary), loss of hearing (temporary), loss of pain and feeling (temporary), nausea and abdominal discomfort, weakness, sweating, a feeling of heat, palpitations and other phenomena.

There are three broad categories of syncope; cardiogenic, reflex or orthostatic hypotension. Cardiogenic forms are more serious and require immediate treatment. Although cardiogenic syncope is much more common in older patients, an effort to rule out arrhythmic, obstructive, ischemic, or cardiomyopathic causes of syncope and circulatory inadequacy is important in each patient.

Syncope is extraordinarily common, occurring for the most part in two age ranges: the teen age years, and during older age. Estimates of lifetime incidence of at least one syncopal episode include 40-50% of the general populace. Syncope comprises 1-3 percent of all attendances to emergency departments and 1-6 percent of all hospital admissions.

Word List:
  • consciousness: the state of being able to use your senses and mental powers to understand what is happening
  • transient: continuing for only a short time
  • postural tone: the continuous and passive partial contraction of the muscles, helping to maintain posture
  • rapid: done or happening very quickly
  • onset: the beginning of something, especially something unpleasant
  • duration: the length of time that something lasts or continues
  • spontaneous: not planned, suddenly
  • preceded: to happen before
  • nausea: the feeling that you have when you want to vomit
  • palpitations: a physical condition in which your heart beats very quickly and in an irregular way
  • phenomena: a fact or an event in nature
  • cardiogenic: symptom or sign that originates from a condition of the heart
  • orthostatic: relating to or caused by an upright posture
  • arrhythmic: an abnormal rate of muscle contractions in the heart
  • obstructive: connected with a passage, tube, etc. in your body that has become blocked
  • ischemic: decrease in the blood supply to a bodily organ, tissue, or part caused by constriction or obstruction of the blood vessels
  • cardiomyopathic: disorder (usually of unknown origin) of the heart muscle (myocardium)
  • extraordinarily: not normal or ordinary; greater or better than usual
  • incidence: how much something happens or has an effect
  • episode: an event in which something happened
  • populace: all the ordinary people of a particular country or area
Pronunciation:
= syncope
= consciousness
= transient
= postural
= spontaneous
= hypoperfusion
= hypotension
= nausea
= palpitation
= phenomena
= cardiogenic
= arrhythmic
= obstructive
= cardiomyopathy
= extraordinarily
= incidence
= episode
= populace


References:
Wikipedia: Syncope (medicine)
Simple.wikipedia: Syncope
MedTerms.com: Syncope
Wikipedia - photo: Fainting by Pietro Longhi