What are nonpharmacologic treatment options for autonomic dysfunction syndromes?

Updated: Oct 21, 2018
  • Author: Mohini Gurme, MD; Chief Editor: Selim R Benbadis, MD  more...
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Nonpharmacologic measures are useful for all patients with autonomic dysfunction. [5] They include the following:

  • Antihypertensive medications and other medications known to lower blood pressure should be discontinued, if feasible

  • Fluid and salt intake should be increased

  • Equipment aids may be helpful; these include tight support stockings, abdominal binders, or antigravity suits for symptomatic hypotension and bladder catheterization for urinary retention

  • Dietary fiber and enemas may help to improve bowel motility and decrease straining during defecation

  • Patients with decreased sweating should limit their physical activity, particularly in hot weather; sponging with water during activity may help to prevent overheating

  • Large meals may exacerbate hypotension and should be avoided

  • Positional changes, such as standing up, should be performed slowly and gradually

  • The head of the bed should be elevated, and prolonged recumbency should be avoided

See Treatment and Medication for more detail.

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