Passing out or fainting occurs when the brain temporarily does not receive enough blood, resulting in loss of consciousness. This loss of consciousness is usually short-lived. However, it could be due to a serious condition that often affects the heart. This usually happens when blood pressure is too low (hypotension) and the heart is not delivering enough blood oxygen to the brain.
Many non-life-threatening factors, such as overheating, dehydration, excessive sweating, fatigue, or blood stagnation in the legs caused by sudden changes in body position, can cause fainting. Therefore, it is vital to determine the cause of the fainting and address any underlying medical conditions.
However, some severe heart diseases, such as bradycardia, tachycardia, or poor blood flow, can also cause fainting and increase the risk of sudden cardiac death.
Treat loss of consciousness as a medical emergency until the cause is known. If you have fainted more than once in a short period, please consult the Cardiology Associates of South Florida.