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EqTrainer
Sep. 19, 2009, 07:58 PM
... ever felt faint when you opened your hip angle?

One of my students feels faint *every time* she opens her hip - only one one side. She can duplicate it off the horse. If she kept pushing it, I really think she'd pass out :eek:

Obviously she will be going to the doctor as this most likely is some sort of nerve inpingement? But I wonder if anyone else has experiences this, and if so, what was it? What did you do?

Laurierace
Sep. 19, 2009, 08:03 PM
Just a guess but I wonder if she isn't vagaling a bit. Google vaso vagus attack or vagus nerve and see if that sounds like a possibility.

pintopiaffe
Sep. 20, 2009, 10:03 AM
Could it be releated to whatever it is that causes us to pass out if we stand at attention and lock our knees?I dunno. That just leapt to the forefront of my mind when I saw the question... Military and Police recruits are VERY familiar with this phenomenon. At attention on a funeral or parade duty for an extended period, you'll hear a CRASH and it's coz someone had their knees locked.

CatOnLap
Sep. 20, 2009, 10:55 AM
my (inexpert) guess is that she is very tight in her hip flexors and when you get her to open them she is stretching the fibers so much as to cause some pain. Not necessarily a lot, but the vagus nerve which ahs been mentioned, supplies pain reception to the inside of the belly and the pain may be associated or referred to th area, activating the vagus nerve and making her feel faint. Vagus controls blood pressure and it can drop it in a heartbeat literally and cause a faint. I would wonder if she had any surgery in the area such as an appendectomy ( would be right side) that may have cause internal scar tissue to be tight in th area.

When people standing at attention for a long time faint it is usually because their blood has been pooling in their legs because they are not using the auxilary action of the leg muscles to return blood to the heart. The heart runs out of blood to pump, phones up the vagus nerve and says "Hay, can you drop this guy so I can get some blood to work with?" Person faints, blood returns to the heart, which is now at the same level as the blood pooled in the legs rather than 5 feet above it, and the person wakes up, assuming they haven't hit their head on the way down.

Miss Dior
Sep. 20, 2009, 11:20 PM
Baroreceptors in large arteries. Google or wiki it.

slc2
Sep. 21, 2009, 04:41 AM
Does she actually say she's in pain? That was not mentioned by the OP - all she mentioned was feeling faint. Or is it only that she feels dizzy (like things around her are spinning and she might lose her balance and fall)? Or like she's going to lose consciousness is the only thing she feels? Does she say she's ever actually passed out from that or any other cause? How old is she? Any other health problems?

It could be the vascular problems mentioned above, or just changing how one is positioned physically can be very emotional, if the muscles are very tight, an osteopath told me many people get faint or burst into tears when he releases spasmed muscles. Not due to cessation of pain because they have often adjusted to the pain and aren't aware of it any more - he just said 'It's a phenomenon'.

AFierceArmadillo
Sep. 21, 2009, 09:35 PM
Well, I'm not a doctor, and I didn't sleep at a Holiday Inn Express last night, but...

I have had a vagal reaction from getting an injection, so feeling faint sounds about right.

I also have *extremely* tight hips... it is difficult and painful for me to open my hips on both sides, worse on the left, and occasionally I have had a sort of spasm reaction to doing it, so these folks are probably right... But mostly I'm chiming in because it makes me feel a lot better that I'm not the only person out there trying to do dressage with hip flexors like cement.

EqTrainer
Sep. 21, 2009, 10:40 PM
Does she actually say she's in pain? That was not mentioned by the OP - all she mentioned was feeling faint. Or is it only that she feels dizzy (like things around her are spinning and she might lose her balance and fall)? Or like she's going to lose consciousness is the only thing she feels? Does she say she's ever actually passed out from that or any other cause? How old is she? Any other health problems?

It could be the vascular problems mentioned above, or just changing how one is positioned physically can be very emotional, if the muscles are very tight, an osteopath told me many people get faint or burst into tears when he releases spasmed muscles. Not due to cessation of pain because they have often adjusted to the pain and aren't aware of it any more - he just said 'It's a phenomenon'.

Thanks for all the replies, everyone. She is a COTHER and I bet has read this thread.. and googled vagus nerve...

and it does sound like that could be it.

But slc, you touch on something that I really think might be possible, that this is something to do w/an emotional response to change in her body. She is young, no health issues. Is it painful? I think so, to some degree. She commented that she feels like she has little control of that leg.

The first time I ever had accupuncture I cried.. and cried.. and cried.. so I believe it.

She is one persistent woman so I am sure she will sort it out, I'll update when we figure out exactly what it is..

slc2
Sep. 22, 2009, 07:05 AM
Have her go through the same motions off the horse. There's a book with great hip stretches called 'Stretching' (large soft cover). Routines for each type of sport. For riding, I put together his gymnastics, running and his riding stretches.

I still don't know if she is, as others assumed, feeling faint due to pain, or just feeling faint, whether she does this under any other circumstances. I still don't have enough questions resolved to really form any ideas about how this looks. it could very easily be some physical problem...but....

I once watched a lesson where a woman was asked to use an opening rein, to move her hand one inch off the horse's neck. After a few rounds at the trot, in which the instructor kept saying, 'come on, just try it, just a little bit' she was sobbing uncontrollably. She tended to keep her hands in a very nice position, but her horse got stiff because the position was so unchanging. The instructor was just trying to 'break it up' a little bit, so the horse wasn't so rigidly in one position, stiff, on the forehand....she was absolutely hysterical at the prospect of moving her hand even an inch inward.

People are often terrified of making a change, even a tiny change. It makes them feel insecure, off balance, in danger. Rather than just let go, let it happen, and give it a try, they can get extremely emotional. They literally are terrified. Often they aren't even aware of it, but their body is aware of it. It's almost an instinctive reaction.

People handle the motions of the horse by trying to dampen the motions of both their body and of the horse. They grip, they tighten up, they try to make themselves look 'elegant', but most of all they react to fear of motion, of being out of control, of unexpected motions of the horse. Most of them have no idea they're even doing it. They aren't even conscious of it.

If you take that away from them, if yiu try to break it up the slightest bit, they get desperate. Put her on the longe line on a very quiet, cushiony horse, and have her go around and do exercises, any exercises, to get her thinking instead of reacting. Loosen her up. Tell her jokes. Make her laugh. Gossip about someone. Give her some detail to concentrate on and harp on it like mad, like having her hold one arm out with the fingers down. Keep at her, keep having her focus on the fingers, and get her to hold them exactly in some position - doesn't matter what as long as it's not too clenched. Give her a complex series of motion - like hold the fingers a certain way, then she reaches down and slaps her thigh, then back to the fingers...give her a whole series of simon sayses... Keep her brain so focused on you and what you want her to do - demand it. Then have her open her hip, and yell, no no no, not too much, just for one second. Then have her stop, and go back to the fingers, thigh, whatever exercise.

We are our own worst enemies, LOL. As a friend of mine said, 'A mind is a terrible thing'.

egontoast
Sep. 22, 2009, 08:47 AM
One of my students feels faint *every time* she opens her hip - only one one side. She can duplicate it off the horse. If she kept pushing it, I really think she'd pass out :eek:

Obviously she will be going to the doctor as this most likely is some sort of nerve inpingement? But I wonder if anyone else has experiences this, and if so, what was it? What did you do

I think it's important to get it checked out by a physician so it's good that she is doing that. I would not push it or assume it is an emotional response to change until a physical/medical issue is ruled out.


Put her on the longe line on a very quiet, cushiony horse, and have her go around and do exercises, any exercises, to get her thinking instead of reacting. Loosen her up. Tell her jokes. Make her laugh. Gossip about someone. Give her some detail to concentrate on and harp on it like mad, like having her hold one arm out with the fingers down. Keep at her, keep having her focus on the fingers, and get her to hold them exactly in some position - doesn't matter what as long as it's not too clenched. Give her a complex series of motion - like hold the fingers a certain way, then she reaches down and slaps her thigh, then back to the fingers...give her a whole series of simon sayses... Keep her brain so focused on you and what you want her to do - demand it. Then have her open her hip, and yell, no no no, not too much, just for one second. Then have her stop, and go back to the fingers, thigh, whatever exercise

I think this would be very unwise unless or until she has seen her doctor and gotten the all clear.

Wayside
Sep. 22, 2009, 09:29 AM
I think it's important to get it checked out by a physician so it's good that she is doing that. I would not push it or assume it is an emotional response to change until a physical/medical issue is ruled out.

I think this would be very unwise unless or until she has seen her doctor and gotten the all clear.

I agree, the fact that she can replicate this off the horse suggests to me that it's not due to emotional factors, nerves, or anything of the sort. Definitely see a doctor.

And if the doctors don't come up with anything, I'd try some gentle stretching, probably lying down somewhere soft, with a friend watching, just in case :winkgrin:

kookicat
Sep. 22, 2009, 09:50 AM
Could it be releated to whatever it is that causes us to pass out if we stand at attention and lock our knees?I dunno. That just leapt to the forefront of my mind when I saw the question... Military and Police recruits are VERY familiar with this phenomenon. At attention on a funeral or parade duty for an extended period, you'll hear a CRASH and it's coz someone had their knees locked.

Do you have any more info about that PP? I'm doing a trade show next Monday, and I'll be standing for at least six hours. I don't want to faint! :)

CatOnLap
Sep. 22, 2009, 10:08 AM
Its because people stand motionless.
If you are standing but stay on the move, even just shifting your weight from foot to foot, the leg muscles will help return the blood to the heart and you are unlikely to faint.

pintopiaffe
Sep. 22, 2009, 10:56 AM
:yes: What she said. I never understood it fully, I'dbeen told it's something to do with LOCKING the knees... the standing "at attention" or even at parade rest. Which makes sense--you lock your knees to stand stock-still, and the blood goes down but not up. ;)

You're fine if you're shifting around. I am on my feet now for 8hrs at a swing, with rarely a 15 or 20min break to sit... but it's not a problem because I'm walking, or even when 'standing' I'm not "at attention" so I'm pacing slightly, shifting weight, etc.

alter-native
Sep. 22, 2009, 01:09 PM
I'm the mystery client. ;)

Let's see here. I'm in my late 20s, overweight but not obese, not as fit as I ought to be but not a lazy sack of lard either. No related health issues that I'm aware of. No surgery, period, and no previous injury to the left leg. No pain when trying to open hip angle.

EqT is the first real dressage trainer I've had, and she focuses more on body position/eq than any other trainer I've ever had for any discipline. I have a saint of a 5-year-old QH cross who is a good sport about most everything and is very tolerant of me learning.

First time I had this happen was in July, on the ground. EqT was trying to explain how to move my leg away from my body from the hip. As with a lot of what EqT has me do, my brain understands what she's asking, but making my body do it correctly is much harder. I had started to *get* this after about 30 seconds to a minute, and then I started feeling nauseous. I got back up on the horse and the feeling did not pass; in fact it got worse. Once I got off and sat in the shade for ~5 minutes, I felt fine. I rode later that day on a different horse and did not have any issues.

This past Saturday, I had EqT help me with my left leg. My right leg is good—I feel like I am aware of what it's doing and can most of the time position it as desired. The left leg, not so much. I had mentioned to her that I seem to have a "dead" spot in the center of the ball of my left foot, and it will go numb and start to ache even with minimal weight in the stirrup—not the same feeling as your foot going to sleep. I've had that for years, and just thought it was one of those quirky things. My left ankle is also not as flexible as the right.

EqT started trying to reposition my leg, and after about 30 seconds of her gently trying to lift it off from the hip and working my knee some, I got nauseated and started feeling faint again. (So embarrassing! :() I ended up having to get off, but I felt fine as we walked back up to the barn. We did some yoga poses and one of them—don't know what it's called—triggered the same response.

I haven't felt dizzy during these, and I don't feel pain ... I just don't feel like I have a good feeling of what's going on in that leg, period, though I can walk on it fine, I feel things with it, etc. I am not sure what to call this.

I saw a nurse practitioner this morning and she palpated knee, hip, pelvis ... no soreness there. Then she did my SI joint, and the left side was *quite* sore. It's still sore almost four hours later, but I don't remember waking up this morning thinking my back hurt or anything in that area was sore. She said picking back up with yoga would only be a good thing, provided I was careful and had an instructor who knew what he/she was doing. She also said chiro/PT could be helpful, but that could get expensive depending on insurance coverage. She did give me an Rx for an anti-inflammatory and told me to try mounting/dismounting from the right to avoid irritating that area further.

I understand what you are saying, slc, about the emotional response. I do not feel afraid or apprehensive about riding/lessons with EqT. I do get frustrated with myself when I understand what is being asked of me but I can't actually *do* it. Or I can do it but then I focus on fixing something else and immediately revert to old habits. Most of what EqT is teaching w/ regard to body position is uncharted territory for me, but it's been very positive. The only thing I'm a bit anxious about now is whether I'll come close to passing out in my next lesson. :no:

I trust my horse and we're in a closed ring, usually working at the walk. There could well be some subconscious thing going on here, but I think at the moment it seems more likely to be a physical issue.

kookicat
Sep. 22, 2009, 01:14 PM
Thanks- yep, it was the locking the knees thing that got me. I do walk about as much as I can, but sometimes you're tied to one spot for a while.

pintopiaffe
Sep. 22, 2009, 02:20 PM
pinched disk somewhere?

My chiro is the cheapest Xrays around... Most will want a set before touching you.

But what you are describing--the nausea--is EXACTLY what happens to me when my crushed c4 disk is irritated. I quite literally can trigger a migraine by turning a certain way--the nausea being the primary thing, the rest following...

I wonder if you've got a pinched/crushed/herniated whatever they want to call it disk down low. That could explain the sciatica in your foot too. While sciatica can be painful, sometimes it is just loss of feeling, numbness etc. And it can be any part of the leg--for some it's foot only. For *me* it's all about the saddle. Some saddles cause my FOOT to fall asleep. Which seems weird, but the twist or waist cause my pelvis to do something that cause my spine to pinch something and voila, dead foot. <shrugs>

cyberbay
Sep. 22, 2009, 02:46 PM
About the emotional aspect: the body can contain and wall off trauma. Mental, emotional or physical. And when that walling-off is challenged -- for example, treating a long-standing muscle spasm -- it can trigger the memories surrounding the trauma that caused the spasm.

Since the OP's OP has joined the conversation, she knows best what is what.

Also, at the risk of beoing grotesque, but crucifixtion kills by suffocation. The unsupported diaphram collapses and no longer can support the lungs. You'll see swelled lower bellies in all the biblical drawings, etc., of crucifixtion. Wonder if that is part of the phenom of standing a long time and then passing out.

Wayside
Sep. 22, 2009, 04:59 PM
The left leg, not so much. I had mentioned to her that I seem to have a "dead" spot in the center of the ball of my left foot, and it will go numb and start to ache even with minimal weight in the stirrup—not the same feeling as your foot going to sleep. I've had that for years, and just thought it was one of those quirky things.

Out on a limb, but have your vit B12 levels been checked?

I have pernicious anemia (I don't digest B12 properly), and for me it presented with odd intermittant foot numbness. Mine was worse in the left than in the right, and worse when riding or driving a car. Went on for several years before a diagnosis.

Might be a long shot, but it's a relatively cheap easy fix if that is the problem. I went through several rounds of injections, and now I can maintain a reasonable level with a sublingual tablet every day.

slc2
Sep. 22, 2009, 05:16 PM
Wow it is great to hear from the student. What a good thing to get so much detail and hear the different point of view.

First of all, you got yourself a good teacher. THAT I'm sure of!

I'm really on the fence about this. It could very easily be a complex medical issue.

But even as odd as it sounds, I think there are other possibilities besides a complex medical issue.

Even the nausea. Yup. Even that. But it can also be some sort of vascular or autonomic NS issue.

And the foot pain can be a separate issue. Might be, might not be.

We only know what we feel, and it's surprising how complex that is - we don't feel some things, some sensory information is distorted, we get so USED to other things we don't consciously have an awareness of them any more, and when we do notice some things and make a theory of them, it looks for all the world like that theory is the only possibility in the world, and we tend to notice things and interpret them to support the theory.

That's not fuel for one cause or another - it's fuel for both - a physiological or a perceptual/emotional issue....or all of the above.

Thing is, if you're like most people, you're due - overdue - for a physical, and it's time to go get one anyway, so get one LOL!

May as well be sure it's not a medical issue! Then once you're clear, THEN try exploring your awareness and your physical reactions.

Thing is, our minds are very powerful. We're not always aware of all the things our bodies and minds do, not all of what goes on is right at the top of the mind. A researcher recently taught spinal-injury mice to walk again, without repairing the spine. Because there is enough neurology right in the nerves of the spine itself,w ithout communicating with the brain. Of course an expert can explain it better than I just did, but it just says to me that our body-mind interactions are complex, and we don't always have a conscious awareness of everything that's going on.

Ambrey
Sep. 22, 2009, 05:36 PM
Alter (and Eq)- I have no help with the nausea thing, (and do wish you luck getting to the bottom of it!) but with the dead foot- I was having the same issue and discussed it with my orthopedic surgeon today. She (actually the PA) said that intermittent numbness is usually a pressure issue rather than a nerve issue (this was good to hear, because I'm having severe spinal issues).

So anyway, I got these great stirrups and my foot doesn't go numb anymore!

http://www.vtosaddlery.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=EWTSI

They also come in a jointed version. Good luck with it all! I have been getting amazing feedback and help from my physical therapist with "random bizarre pain stuff"- hopefully you'll get help somewhere too!

alter-native
Sep. 22, 2009, 06:04 PM
Out on a limb, but have your vit B12 levels been checked?

I have pernicious anemia (I don't digest B12 properly), and for me it presented with odd intermittant foot numbness. Mine was worse in the left than in the right, and worse when riding or driving a car. Went on for several years before a diagnosis.

Might be a long shot, but it's a relatively cheap easy fix if that is the problem. I went through several rounds of injections, and now I can maintain a reasonable level with a sublingual tablet every day.

Hmmm. I asked the CNP if we could check my thyroid this morning too—I thought it had been a while, and I do try to keep an eye on that as thyroid issues run in my family. I'd been feeling more cold and tired than usual, so I thought it might be wise to check that. That did come back as normal last November, so we didn't do that today.

I have had anemia before though—I only found out about it because I went to donate blood and they did the fingerprick thing and said no way. I didn't actively seek treatment for it, but I did up my intake of spinach and steak, lol.

Er, no, I don't take a daily vitamin. :uhoh: I go buy a bottle every year after my OB/GYN chastises me ... and then I forget to take them. Good intentions, and all that. *runs and hides*