What is the role of vital signs in the evaluation of syncope?

Updated: Jan 13, 2017
  • Author: Rumm Morag, MD, FACEP; Chief Editor: Erik D Schraga, MD  more...
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Answer

Always analyze the vital signs. Fever may point to a precipitant of syncope, such as a urinary tract infection (UTI) or pneumonia. Postural changes in blood pressure (BP) and heart rate may point toward an orthostatic cause of syncope but are generally unreliable. Tachycardia may be an indicator of pulmonary embolism, hypovolemia, tachyarrhythmia, or acute coronary syndrome. Bradycardia may point toward a vasodepressor cause of syncope, a cardiac conduction defect, or acute coronary syndrome.


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