Vagal Reaction

As the regular readers of this blog know, I had an episode of vagal reaction in September of ’04. (Read more about that incident here.) Last night, I was the lucky recipient of another visit by the vagal nerve fairy.

It was essentially the same kind of event as before: strong stomach pain, sweating, really feeling uncomfortable, skin crawling, go to the bathroom, and pass out onto the floor. This time I fell over the tub wall from a seated position, rather than from a standing position into the marble window sill, so that’s something good I guess.

We did the same things as last time — scoop me from the floor, apply cold towels, get me lying down in bed, and trying to cool me down and settle me down. Beck called the dial-a-nurse program we have as part of our insurance, and they indicated that the symptoms implied a vagal reaction. In an hour or so, I was calmed, and on my way to sleep.

Aside from feeling like I’ve run a marathon or two, and having a little nagging headache, I’m fine now, apart from being exhausted.

In reading about this strange condition, I see a lot of anecdotal stories about stress, pain, and dehydration being prime contributors to the onset of an episode. I don’t think that I’ve been in a great deal of stress lately, and I’ve been making sure to really hydrate myself when I ride, consuming better than 40oz of fluid on a two-hour ride — and that’s in 70 degree weather!

My bet is pain, and in this case and the last, the pain of a pretty powerful stomach ache. We had big steaks for dinner, and I know sometimes that’ll cause some stomach cramping for me. Lacking any other info, that’s what I’m chocking it up to.

However, I’m gonna talk to the Doc tomorrow, and make an appointment for my annual physical — it’s about time anyway. I think he’ll be pleased with my weight, with my exercise regimen, and hopefully that will bear fruit in other areas. My guess is that this will just be something else to watch as time goes on.