Carotid Sinus Syndrome or Carotid Hypersensitivity

In our body's anatomy, the carotid sinus also known as carotid bulb is an area which is located in the superior portion of the area of bifurcation of the common carotids. This sinus is extremely sensitive to pressure changes in the arterial blood. When this sinus becomes sensitive to even minor stimulation, it may result in many complications like loss of consciousness etc. In this article, we will discuss about the various causes, symptoms, and treatment of Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome.

Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome

How Do We Define Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome?

In Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome, the carotid sinus artery becomes extremely sensitive to any type of stimulus and as a result starts affecting the heart rate, appropriate blood flow to the brain, and the blood pressure. In severe cases of Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome, there is loss of consciousness or seizures that may occur due to buildup of pressure in the carotid sinus arteries as a result of manual stimulation. When the Carotid Sinus Artery gets compressed, the blood flow to the cerebellum may get impaired resulting in brain damage and/or death if this artery is not decompressed or released within a specific time period.

Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome is more found in the elderly population. It generally affects people above the age of 50 and males are usually more prone to Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome.

Who Are All At Risk For Developing Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome?

As stated, males are more prone to develop Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome. The chances of developing Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome increase with age. Individuals with coronary artery disease or other heart conditions are more prone to develop this syndrome. It can also develop in individuals with tumors in head or neck region. Hypertension may also cause Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome.

Symptoms Of Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome

Some Of The Symptoms Of Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome Are:

  • Frequent dizziness episodes
  • Hypotension
  • Loss of muscle tone
  • Excessive scarring in neck area
  • Amnesia after an episode of loss of consciousness
  • Reduced heart rate
  • Sudden falls, especially in the elderly population.

Diagnosis of Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome

Generally, the physician will look for this diagnosis when an individual comes with dizziness and disorientation without any potential cause. The physician may also employ massage techniques to the neck region to look for a drop in the blood pressure etc. to confirm the diagnosis of Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome.

Treatment for Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome

Surgical procedures like denervation surgery and endarterectomy is done to correct carotid hypersensitivity. Anticoagulants like asprin or Plavix can be given to prevent blood clotting and the blood getting thickened.

Managing Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome

Carotid Sinus Hypersensitivity or Carotid Sinus Syndrome can be managed by following some steps as mentioned below:

  • Avoid massaging the carotid sinus
  • Avoid wearing tight collars
  • Turn the head slowly
  • Need to be extra careful when shaving over this area so as not to stimulate the artery.

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD, FFARCSI

Last Modified On: November 6, 2014

Pain Assist Inc.

Pramod Kerkar
  Note: Information provided is not a substitute for physician, hospital or any form of medical care. Examination and Investigation is necessary for correct diagnosis.

Symptom Checker

Slideshow:  Home Remedies, Exercises, Diet and Nutrition

Chakra's and Aura's

Yoga Information Center

Find Pain Physician

Subscribe to ePainAssist Newsletters

By clicking Submit, I agree to the ePainAssist Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of ePainAssist subscriptions at any time.

Copyright © 2016 ePainAssist, All rights reserved.

DMCA.com Protection Status