Fainting and Causes of Lightheadedness

Lightheadedness causes a sensation that a person is about to faint. Fainting is described as the brief and sudden loss of consciousness which is subsequently followed by the spontaneous return of consciousness in the person who has just fainted.

Causes of Lightheadedness

The causes of fainting and lightheadedness are usually the same since a person cannot lose his or her consciousness unless the function of the brain is considerably disturbed. The disturbance in the functioning of the brain is usually caused by inadequate blood supply to the brain. Adequate blood flow to the brain can also be reduced due to a cardiac disorder, rather a cardiac disorder which interferes with the normal return of blood supply to the heart which consequently affects the blood supply to the brain. It is because of this reason that older people are particularly susceptible to inadequate blood supply to their brain. However brain disorders generally do not cause fainting unless they affect the blood vessels carrying blood to the brain. Other brain disorders such as seizures can often cause loss of consciousness but this loss of consciousness is not considered to be fainting.

In cardiac disorders adequate blood supply to the brain can be reduced when the heart rhythm is abnormal that is, it is too fast or too slow or when the heart is not able to pump adequate blood to the brain because the blood flow is blocked. Blood flow can often be blocked because of a defective valve in the heart such as a defective aortic valve. Blockage of blood flow can also be due to blood clots in the heart or in the lungs and is rarely caused by atrial myxoma or heart tumors.

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Yasser Elnahas

MD, PHD, Professor Of CardioVascular Surgery
Dr. Yasser Elnahas, Is an associate Professor of Cardiovascular Surgery. Dr. Elnahas was trained as a fellow At Texas Heart Institute And Mayo Clinic Foundation.Dr. Elnahas is dedicated to educating the general public about different disease conditions and simplifying the medical knowledge in an easy to understand terminology.

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