I feel that many of our symptoms have got to be linked to a lack of oxygen getting to the brain but I've never been told this by a doctor (I think that's generally accepted in reference to syncope but I'm referring to many other symptoms we all experience). I've had normal pulse-ox readings when they put the little clamp thingy on your finger to measure it. But my question is is it possible that even though maybe I'm getting enough oxygen in my blood that maybe I'm not getting enough to my brain, or it's not being distributed properly throughout my body (after all our nervous systems are responsible for that sort of thing)? And if so, have any of you heard of any way test this?? Or have you even heard of this theory?
I've been coming to the same conclusion. I tried measuring my bp not at heart level but at head level and there is a difference there. A marked one. But I'm not sure if it's the fact that it's only a limb that I can measure and maybe the bp on my actual head is fine or if indeed the higher up I go in my body, the less bp there is. It's confusing. It makes sense, since the brain doesn't feel like it's working fine. but at the same time... I don't know how else to measure it.
There are times that I have had lower pulse oximetry readings and I think at the time my heart was not getting all distributed well and it was when I had a sinus tachycardia and extreme SOB with activity. There have also been times when my RBC count has been down. It is important to understand that the oxygen level in blood is also dependent on how much hemoglobin is available to carry oxygen and your RBC. An oximeter only tells you how well the hemoglobin is saturated it does not tell you how much content is actually in the body. A person can have a 100% reading on oximetry and can still have problems due to low hemaglobin. If your hemoglobin is saturated but deficient in numbers you will still have a problem of not having enough total oxygen bu oximetry will not show it up but an arterial blood gas will. Sometimes doctors do a complete blood count to check the hemoglobin and make sure you aren't anemic. The other thing you bring up is distribution and for sure that is an important factor as well. You can be well saturated and have good hemoglobin levels and still have something wrong with distribution. Sometimes there is a mis-match in blood distribution and saturation. I am thinking here of arrhythmia's or some heart factor that effects distribution or even an event like having an emboli where an area is blocked. I don't think emboli are common in dysautonomia but for sure heart arrhythmia are a part of it for many. So yes I think there are definitely times when our brains don't get enough oxygen and we feel light headed. This of course happens with low BP as well as at other times when distribution or anemia or other things are factors.
The following article is about diabetic neuopathy but it has a section on autonomic
dysfunction and oxygen distribution to the brain being impaired. Hope this helps! Marie
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