Nicole graduated high school, but was forced to withdraw from college because she suffers from dysautonomia, particularly postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS).
This disorder causes rapid heartbeat, fainting spells upon standing, and a host of other symptoms. POTS is difficult to treat because the body’s nervous system is affected, namely the involuntary muscle function. If you don’t think that’s important, think again.
The involuntary muscles handle things like regulating heart rate, blood pressure, and digestion.
Last year, Nicole’s health took a turn for the worse. She was frequently transported to the hospital in an ambulance because of breathing problems and fainting spells. But this change hasn’t stopped her from raising awareness about dysautonomia.
She contacted the mayor of her town and after their conversation, he named October “Dysautonomia Month” in her honor. He also asked residents to wear the color turquoise, which is the signature color for dysautonomia awareness.
Nicole was thrilled with the October happenings, but her health further declined in the ensuing weeks. She is currently living with her mom and dad as a safety measure.
To date, Nicole has suffered five concussions from falling, and she is increasingly more home-bound not only because of her fear of falling, but also because she suffers from profound fatigue.
She prefers to interact with her friends on social media. Despite all she’s been through, Nicole maintains a positive attitude. Her doctors tell her to consume lots of salt to keep her blood pressure up.
In fact, her cardiologist jokes that she is the first patient he’s told to eat MORE salt rather than less.
But her greatest wish for 2016 is that her docs finally find that “magical cocktail” of meds to regulate her nervous system so that she can be safe when she stands up and walks.30
A new blood pressure medicine called Northera might be the magic ticket. It has had success treating symptoms similar to Nicole’s.