Preparing for your appointment

It's a good idea to prepare for your appointment to make the most of your time with your doctor.

What you can do

  • Write down details of your symptoms, including any triggers that may have caused you to faint.
  • Make a list of any medications, vitamins and supplements you're taking.
  • Write down questions you want to ask your doctor, including potential tests and treatments.

What to expect from your doctor

Questions your doctor might ask you include:

  • What were you doing just before you fainted?
  • What signs and symptoms, if any, did you experience before you fainted?
  • Have you ever fainted before? If yes, what were you doing before you fainted then?
  • Have you recently started taking a new medication?
  • Have you ever had a head injury?
  • Has anyone in your family died suddenly of heart problems?

During the physical exam, your doctor will listen to your heart and take your blood pressure. He or she may also massage the main arteries in your neck to see if that causes you to feel faint.

Feb. 12, 2016
References
  1. Syncope. Merck Manual Professional Version. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/cardiovascular_disorders/symptoms_of_cardiovascular_disorders/syncope.html#v1145025. Accessed Dec. 14, 2015.
  2. Stone CK, et al., eds. Immediate management of life-threatening problems causing syncope. In: Current Diagnosis & Treatment: Emergency Medicine. 7th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Dec. 14, 2015.
  3. Jardine DL. Vasovagal syncope: New physiologic insights. Cardiology Clinics. 2013;31:75.
  4. Aminoff MJ, et al. Seizures & syncope. In: Clinical Neurology. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Dec. 14, 2015.
  5. Angaran P, et al. Syncope. Neurology Clinics. 2011;29:903.
  6. Olshansky B. Upright tilt table testing in the evaluation of syncope. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 15, 2015.