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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Exp 50 years

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What causes dizziness and nausea in an elderly person?

Answered by
Dr. Shuba Hariprasad

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2002

Answered : 1087 Questions

Posted on Fri, 18 Aug 2017 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Question: Dr., I am 60 yoa and had an acute MI 1/20/17; now have a stent in. About a month past (2nd follow-up), my Cardio took me off my BP meds because I was consistently reading in the low-upper middle 90s systolic, my HR resting is steadily consistent in the low 60s. I have 2-3 readings/week of BP from low 120s-mid 140s but, otherwise, it's pretty steady in the 100-teens. Today, I experienced what I believe was a hypoglycemic episode - I used to experience them occasionally when I was in my 20s & 30s and should say that I frequently don't eat much during the day- not dieting, just tend not to eat according to the clock, only when I'm hungry. I experienced all my "classic" signs of a hypoglycemic event, immediate sweats, shaky feeling but, I should note that the day of my MI I experienced the same "symptoms" but along with weakness, dizziness, nausea and achy head-none of which happened today. I had no juice so I grabbed a bar of string cheese, some dried tart cherries, and a spoon of honey and felt fine almost immediately. I did eat right after, too. I took my BP 10 mins after the event and it read 144/74, HR 68. Is this something I need to worry about or, as I'm thinking, just an isolated incident brought about because I didn't eat all day?
Answered by Dr. Shuba Hariprasad 2 hours later
Brief Answer:
Please see your cardiologist and physician right away

Detailed Answer:
Thank you for your query.
I'm Dr. Shuba Hariprasad and will be answering your query today.

Yes, it could be a hypoglycemic episode but it could also be related to the heart.

Would you clarify a few things for me, please?
*do you have any other medical issues or take any medications?
*do you smoke or consume alcohol?
*any family history of heart disease, hypertension, high cholesterol

You are probably on beta blockers, among other medications. This can mask the initial signs of hypoglycemia and can prevent your heart from responding adequately to the stress on your body in such situations.

I recommend :
-a physician consult right away
-a consult with your cardiologist to check for any new cardiac events.
-electrocardiogram and echocardiogram
-blood tests (hemoglobin, hematocrit levels, HBA1C, Creatinine, cardiac enzymes)

Based on this we can find out what is going on.

In the meantime :
-please eat before you get hungry. Once you are hungry, your body is already deprived of energy and this has a negative effect on your cardiovascular, nervous and metabolic systems.
-have smaller but frequent meals to keep your energy going on steadily.

If you develop any of these symptoms again or you have chest /upper abdominal discomfort, unexplained sweating, breathing difficulty, visit the ER right away.

As you felt better after eating, it could have been hypoglycemia. However, from what you ate, I would expect, it would have been slightly longer for you to feel better.
I'd like to advise caution and suggest that you see your doctors asap to make sure all is well.

Hope I've helped. Please let me know if there is anything else I can help you with.
Warm regards,
Dr. Shuba Hariprasad
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Yogesh D

The User accepted the expert's answer

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