Will I be able to play the violin afterwards?
March 30, 2010 12:14 PM   Subscribe

YANMD I just had a weird faint-y, nauseated episode. Care to speculate? I'm invited to a Seder this evening, and don't want to go if I'm contagious.

Ordinary breakfast of coffee, granola bar (8 a.m.). Morning snack of birthday cake (11ish), Lunch of lean cuisine meatloaf-n-mashed potatoes at 1, w/ lactaid on the side. At 1:20 or so, I started to feel awful, stomach-ache, vision went a bit gray, got shaky, pale, and really nauseated, didn't actually lose lunch, but pooped. Yes, I was already in the bathroom, thinking that lunch was about to make an unfortunate reappearance, which it nearly did, and still might.

At a recent doc visit, my blood pressure and blood sugar were unremarkable.

sugar overload?
food poisoning?
radiation from crappy microwave at work? (kidding)
posted by theora55 to Health & Fitness (28 answers total)
Best answer: Have you been drinking water at all? (If not, it might be a good idea.)
posted by restless_nomad at 12:15 PM on March 30, 2010

Could you be pregnant?
posted by rabbitrabbit at 12:16 PM on March 30, 2010

I am not a doctor. You could stop by a minute clinic and get checked out if you're worried.

Syncope? Vasovagal episode?

If you feel fine now, I'm sure you're fine for Seder.
posted by anniecat at 12:17 PM on March 30, 2010

Could be the 24 hour stomach flu which is going around, in which case, you'll know pretty fast to stay home.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:17 PM on March 30, 2010

That exact thing happens to me if I overexert myself on an empty stomach. I'm guessing something related to blood sugar?
posted by something something at 12:18 PM on March 30, 2010

Best answer: I have chronic low blood pressure and when it really gets low, you describe how I feel. Same with the blood sugar levels dropping. Just because they checked out fine when you went to the doctor, doesn't mean that they don't occasionally take a dive here and there.
posted by Sassyfras at 12:19 PM on March 30, 2010 [1 favorite]

What you describe sounds like a vasovagal episode, saying which does little more than providing a label (for something it may or may not have been.) The things you describe could have approximately one zillion causes and I don' t think AskMe is likely to shed light on whether it's the result of a communicable disease.
posted by Zed at 12:22 PM on March 30, 2010

Are you anemic? I am, and on occasion have had similar episodes.
posted by Fui Non Sum at 12:33 PM on March 30, 2010

Best answer: There is no such thing as the 24 hour stomach flu. It's food poisoning.
posted by elsietheeel at 12:36 PM on March 30, 2010

I feel like I'm going to puke right before I pass out. I have been known to pass out due to low blood sugar, dehydration, and hyperventilation due to gall bladder pain. I have never experienced those symptoms because I had a virus or was sick with something contagious.
posted by Kimberly at 12:39 PM on March 30, 2010

Response by poster: No, I could not be pregnant. Not sure what would cause vasovagal episode; no apparent triggers. I still feel shaky and nauseated, but not as acutely.
posted by theora55 at 12:40 PM on March 30, 2010

Sounds like a 24 hour virus to me.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:45 PM on March 30, 2010

I've got low blood pressure, and this happens to me if I'm sitting for a long time and get up too quickly, or if I am concentrating on something so closely that I don't move from one position for a long time.
posted by JoanArkham at 12:46 PM on March 30, 2010

There is no such thing as the 24 hour stomach flu.

Yes there is. It's called norovirus, and it's highly contagious.
As to whether or not that's what theora55 has, we have no way of knowing.
posted by wondermouse at 12:56 PM on March 30, 2010 [1 favorite]

If you still feel shaky and nauseated, it seems worth it to stay home tonight whether or not you're contagious. You're not going to get much out of the ceremony if you're constantly worrying about whether you're going to pass out or puke.
posted by vytae at 1:10 PM on March 30, 2010 [1 favorite]

Personally, this Jew would skip a Seder if she were feeling shaky and nauseated, lest she pass out in the charoseth.

More seriously: the last time I had your symptoms, I wound up being seriously ill for a week. A trip to the doctor might be in order.
posted by thomas j wise at 1:35 PM on March 30, 2010

Huge sugar load and then crash. Look at what you ate: granola bar (sugar!), birthday cake (sugar!) and Lean Cuisine (have you ever checked the sugar content on the package - wow!). Your body's blood sugar then plummeted and you felt nauseated and fainty. Eat some protein and good carbs (nuts would be great), drink lots of water and rock the Seder.
posted by meerkatty at 1:37 PM on March 30, 2010 [1 favorite]

I have just been diagnosed with heartburn high up in my esophagus. I never got what I thought was a heartburn sensation they say in the commercials... and I pretty much eat the same thing, regular diet every week. I get faint, maybe a bit of pressure and nausea ... just as you described above. Taking a few Galviscon makes me right as rain in about 15 minutes... another thing to consider.
posted by eatdonuts at 1:44 PM on March 30, 2010

Norovirus is one of the many causes of food poisoning. "Stomach flu" is a misnomer. Gastroenteritis has nothing to do with influenza.
posted by elsietheeel at 1:46 PM on March 30, 2010

At my workplace (also in Portland) there has been a 48-hour bug going around. Last night I was incapacitated with a 103 fever, but I feel ok today.

I would skip the Seder. I think its probably a bug.
posted by anastasiav at 2:04 PM on March 30, 2010

Norovirus is one of the many causes of food poisoning. "Stomach flu" is a misnomer. Gastroenteritis has nothing to do with influenza.

Right, but your earlier post made it sound like she can't possibly have anything contagious because it's just food poisoning, and I was concerned that she marked that as a "best answer" since it really might be something contagious, like norovirus. Yes, "stomach flu" is a misnomer since it's not technically influenza, but what it describes is a contagious stomach virus, not noncontagious food poisoning.
posted by wondermouse at 2:07 PM on March 30, 2010

No, I could not be pregnant. Not sure what would cause vasovagal episode; no apparent triggers. I still feel shaky and nauseated, but not as acutely.

Prolonged periods of standing or even sitting relatively upright with little physical activity can sometimes spontaneously lead to vasovagal symptoms as a result of venous pooling in your lower body and reduced venous blood return to the heart, particularly if you're already on the dehydrated side. I've had similar symptoms well into a long flight once. Not saying that's necessarily what happened, but it's quite possible.
posted by drpynchon at 3:15 PM on March 30, 2010

I should add that technically some would call that the Bezold-Jarisch reflex.
posted by drpynchon at 3:18 PM on March 30, 2010

Something similar happened to me. I went to the doctor thinking I was anemic and the doc said nope -- severe stress! I thought he was nuts, but after some experiment, I realized he was right. I hadn't even realized how crazy stressed I had become because I was functioning otherwise just fine. Other than the falling over, of course. Things calmed down and the episodes went away, haven't had any in ten years. Might want to take a few minutes to meditate and really assess your mental health.
posted by letahl at 5:26 PM on March 30, 2010

If I were you, I'd eat a boiled egg and some toast (or matza), drink some water and lie down for a little while. If I felt better, I would go to the seder, but be prepared to leave early if I felt icky.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 6:41 PM on March 30, 2010

My apparent vasovagal episodes prompted my doctor to order some tests, even though I am otherwise healthy according to standard checkup stats. I have ordinary blood pressure and blood sugar, but a sudden (temporary) drop in either of these can trigger an episode in some people.

Whatever you have decided for this evening, please plan on bringing it up with your doctor so that you can at least eliminate anything serious.
posted by tantivy at 6:52 PM on March 30, 2010

Those are exactly the symptoms the mister gets when he has a low blood sugar episode (verified by my BG meter, I'm diabetic). However, that doesn't mean that's what happened to you.

Since I'm pretty sure your Seder is over by now, how are you feeling now? If you're still feeling icky, I'd get to a doc asap.
posted by deborah at 10:27 PM on March 30, 2010

Response by poster: Drank water. Stayed at work until I felt stable enough to drive straight home, where I was quite ill. Food poisoning, almost certainly. Thanks for the comments.

So realized as I was lazing on the couch today that this is when I miss my Mom the most; when I need somebody to fuss over me by phone and tell me to go lie down. Sigh. Totally annoyed to miss the Seder, my friends, my friend's amazing matzoh ball soup (it's all about the broth), and more yummy cake. Y'all are all honorary Jewish Moms, regardless of religion or gender.
posted by theora55 at 12:02 PM on March 31, 2010

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