Tilt Table Tests
Diagnosis for the Cause of Fainting Spells
If you have been the victim of frequent, unexplained fainting spells, your
doctor may recommend a tilt table test. This test monitors blood pressure
and heart rate and how your cardiovascular system responds to changes
in position. It is primarily used to diagnose syncope, which is a disorder
where an individual faints due to low blood pressure reducing the blood
flow to the brain. Syncope can be very dangerous as the fainting spells
are not often preempted with warning signs like sweating or nausea, giving
the victim little time to prepare for a safe fall.
Preparing for the Test
There is not much you need to do to prepare for a tilt table test. Continue
to take medications as prescribed unless instructed otherwise. The night
before your test, stop eating and drinking after midnight. Be sure to
have someone ready to drive you to and from the doctor’s office,
as you may feel lightheaded afterwards.
How it Works
In the tilt test, patients lie face up on a table and are gently strapped
into place. After 15 minutes of lying flat, the table is moved upwards
to simulate the sensation of standing up after lying down. This upright
position is held for roughly 45 minutes while doctors monitor the
During the test, you will be connected to four devices:
- Oximeter monitor
- Blood pressure monitor
Some patients faint during the test, which is a clear indicator they have
syncope. Otherwise, the doctors review the results of the cardiovascular
response and may diagnose the precise cause of the fainting spells.
The tilt table test is available in Fremont at Washington Township Medical
Foundation where they are performed by highly experienced cardiologists.
If you have frequent fainting spells, it is important to seek help as
soon as possible to prevent a serious injury.