Wow! Thanks for the outpouring of concern for the two of us. My intention wasn’t to alarm anyone, only to try and work through my anxiety at the whole situation. I felt so much better once I wrote it all out, and mainly because I was realizing I was here to write it in the first place. For all of you wondering what happened to make my husband pass out, I will tell you we honestly don’t know. The ER doctor ran all kinds of tests, but was only able to tell us it could be one of two things…food poisoning, or a flu bug of some kind. Once admitted to the hospital he launched into full blown bouts of vomiting, his temperature spiked, and a lovely rash appeared on his face. There wasn’t a dull moment, but he doing a thousand times better today. Once home, and feeling more stable, he launched into a search on the web to try and diagnose what really happened. Has anyone every heard of the Vagus Nerve? No? Well now you have. Seems most fainting is triggered by the this nerve which is the tenth of twelve paired cranial nerves. It connects the digestive system to the brain, and it’s job is to manage blood flow to the gut. When food enters the system, the vagus nerve directs blood to the stomach and intestines, pulling it from other body tissues, including the brain. Unfortunately, the vagus nerve can get a little too excited, pull too much blood from the brain, and down you go. People go limp and often break out in a cold sweat, which is exactly what happened to Ron. In some folks with a hyper vagus nerve, stimulating it causes the heart to slow drastically. However, once the victim actually passes out, the vagus nerve stops doing its thing, and the victim’s heart begins to speed up in order to fix the low blood pressure. Problem is, you don’t know how long it is going to take this nerve to stop “doing its thing.” In the case of Saturday nights episode it was a whopping 10 seconds! The article he found pretty much explained everything to us and made complete sense as to why he went down so quickly. Follow this link to the article entitled “Causes of Fainting” to read more. He is doing fine now, but we do think he had some kind of bug that got into his system. The nausea and stomach cramping he experienced was awful, but he is almost back to normal. Remember that Jell-O is your friend when you get these stomach illnesses. Besides Gatorade, it’s really one of the few things that is mild enough to not irritate your gut any further, and it provides nourishment at the same time.
So, this morning my husband says to me, after reading my post…. “You did a good job explaining what happened after I passed out, but you failed to mention what caused me to faint.” Ooops, my bad. Since all the comments started to flood into my inbox and the phone started to ring, I thought I should ex spell any ideas you might have come to on your own. My first thoughts ran to… “Oh No! They all probably think he has a drinking problem!” No, no nothing of the kind. Seems once you have this malfunctioning nerve condition you have it for the rest of your life. Great. I really hope there are no more adventures, like this one, in his or my near future. We really could do without the drama!