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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Elevators

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Author Topic: Elevators
Hambone
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I used to never ever have issues with elevators. In fact, I loved them.


This past Wednesday, I went to Mayo Clinic for a non-Lyme issue ( trouble after gallbladder surgery/ sphincter of oddi dysfunction ), and got on the elevator to go to the 6th floor. Once it started, I was practically knocked to the ground and almost passed out! It felt like everything in my brain suddenly rushed to my feet.

I thought it was just a freak moment, went and sat down for a few minutes to collect myself, and went to my appointment.

Got back on the elevator to go down this time, and the same thing happened! This time there were a couple of strangers in the elevator and I was embarrassed. As soon as it started moving, I could feel blood rushing from my head and I went to my knees and got very wooozy. This has never happened before..ever.

Is this a Lyme or POTS thing?

I have to go back NOV 1 and now I'm trying to figure out how to hike up 6 flights of stairs without dying because now all of a sudden elevators scare me! [bow]

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Keebler
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Could be lyme/TBD due to various causes within all that with brain &/or vestibular &/or blood pressure / blood volume.

I've had this happen, too. What's worse is that the "ding" of the elevator bells also trigger seizures for me - and each elevator is unique with its bells and whistles (and then the cell phones of other riders).

Call the bldg. manager and ask how you can do this more safety - can they let you borrow a wheelchair for the elevator ride and for a few minutes afterward? Maybe the office where you are going can arrange that.

Just tell them for ease of this arrangement that you "have an inner ear condition & vertigo -- and that my blood pressure seems to drop from the elevator ride."
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Hambone
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Yes, they have wheelchairs all over the place for people to use. I will use one, but dang...I'm still scared. I will put my head between my knees and will just not have to care if people think I'm weird.

Now that I think about it, when I got to my appointment, my BP was 86/60.

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Keebler
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If you have ever done yoga, Qi Gong or Tai Chi - or meditation - use those same breathing and centering breathing skills.

If you've not had that exposure, go to YouTube and find the better offerings for "rhythmic breathing" and then also some for "Qi Gong, calm breath" or a similar search.

TULSI (Holy Basil), the herb, as tincture, capsule or tea would be excellent for a few hours beforehand. See the "ADRENAL" link below. Also search "TULSI" at www.mercola.com -

GINGER CAPSULES - for several days beforehand - good for the inner ear and the brain & circulation. See the "EAR" link below.
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[ 10-19-2012, 05:31 PM: Message edited by: Keebler ]

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Keebler
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BP 85/60 was likely an effect from the elevator ride.

Have you been assessed for POTS or NMH? Just Google each term with the cross reference of blood+pressure.

You might ask for a Tilt Table Test.

ADRENAL dysfunction tightly connected, too.

SEA SALT in water first thing in morning might help. Adrenal support, too.

Be sure to arrive at least 15 minutes prior - ask to be put into the room early so that you can sit very calmly before they take the BP next time.

Once settled and waiting in the exam room, do not get up until you get that checked.

Then have them also check right after you stand up. This is not the perfect test but it can give some clues if the sitting BP is much different than immediately upon standing.
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Keebler
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Others' scented products can also trigger such an episode and "payback" time, too.

For this reason, when you can use that wheelchair, try to get into an elevator car that has no other folks, if possible. You can never tell when your brain will get whacked by others' scents or cleaning chemicals in the car - or building restrooms.

While even most essential oils can be too risking for those with chemical sensitivities, two I've found seem to work well: mint or lemon.

Lemon essential oil can help the brain right after a chemical assault (cologne, cleaners, diesel exhaust). Young Living is a very good brand. Get a vial and keep with you so you can take a whiff if you take a hit.

As you travel to the appointment, keep a distance from diesel exhaust of vehicles' before you in traffic. Actually, give ALL vehicles a whole car length when possible.

Also air out the car a bit before you get into it.

I assume any kind of doctor that any of us go to would ask their staff (and patients) to be scent free. If that is not the case, call ahead and ask the staff if they could refrain from scents for a day before and the day of your appt.

Ask them to remove scents from their restroom, too.

If possible, might they be able to open a window and get some fresh air exchange in the day or two prior to your visit? This, of course, depends on the outside air. If they are next to a dry cleaners, not a good idea.

This is a perfectly logical request. Even if you don't seem sensitive, by what you describe, it's very important to take such considerations.
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Keebler
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After the elevator delivers you to the desired floor (whether going up or down) . . . pull over to an out of the way place and just stay seated for at least 10 minutes (knowing that you'll probably push that to just five).

Do not get up until you feel fully okay. Stay in the roller ball special if you need to for a while.

As you stand, just lolly-gag about for a short time before moving on your way.

Whomever is arranging the use - ask them if someone will be available to give you a short lesson first.

Do not go face first into the elevator, you need to turn around and back in so that you will be facing forward for the ride. But that can make one dizzy, too.

So, you may be able to walk the chair in and then sit down before the elevator moves. It would be best to be seated for while first, though.

Before the doors open:

Look down at your lap. Do not be watching the doors as they suddenly open. This sudden visual shift in motion and contrast can drop me like a rock. Just a word to the wise to avoid that.
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Keebler
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Making a few different posts here mostly because I keep forgetting to put it all together but the separate sections may help you better remember.

BE WELL HYDRATED well in advance in a consistent manner - no huge rushes of water (and, of course, with a comfortable bladder, too). If you are thirsty, the chances are increased for an "episode" such as you describe.

TAKE OFF YOUR CLOTHES if you get too hot in the elevator. Well, not too many clothes, of course ;-)

Getting overheated can also tip the scales and send you south. Just don't go there in the first place. It's much harder to cool down than to stay cool in the first place.
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Keebler
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http://www.vestibular.org/understanding-vestibular-disorder/symptoms

Vestibular Symptoms (most of which can be caused by lyme/TBD)


http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=1;t=065801

Topic: TINNITUS: Ringing Between The Ears; Vestibular, Balance, Hearing with compiled links - including HYPERACUSIS


http://flash.lymenet.org/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/1/89790

Topic: NATURAL SLEEP & ADRENAL SUPPORT - essential for blood pressure regulation
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Keebler
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Relating to sudden drops in blood pressure with a change in posture (exceedingly common with lyme/TBD and vestibular issues),

POTS & NMH have several good posts here:

http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=1;t=077325;p=0#000000

Topic: To everyone with CARDIAC symptoms please read!
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Hambone
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Thanks so much, Keebler.
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cleo
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I second the vestibular link. I used to have it really bad. It is now mostly gone.
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