Syncope is a common problem with a large differential diagnosis. The initial history and physical examination often provide initial clues; however, some cases warrant further testing to determine the underlying cause. Autonomic function testing is a safe way to evaluate patients with syncope further, and to assess their parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems. Autonomic testing can help to diagnose several conditions, including orthostatic hypotension, delayed orthostatic hypotension, postural tachycardia syndrome and neutrally mediated syncope. Thus, when the cause of syncope is unclear, autonomic testing can help to assess the autonomic nervous system, stratify the risk of future episodes and to guide treatment decisions.
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