BMJ Case Reports 2017; doi:10.1136/bcr-2017-221925
  • Unusual presentation of more common disease/injury

Syncope from radiation-induced baroreceptor failure

  1. Mark Rabbat2
  1. 1Internal Medicine, Loyola University, Maywood, Illinois, USA
  2. 2Internal Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, Illinois, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Scott E Janus, sejanus2{at}
  • Accepted 1 October 2017
  • Published 11 October 2017


Orthostatic hypotension has a vast differential that has been previously described throughout the literature. However, baroreceptor failure as a sequela of head and neck radiation is not often recognised as an important cause of dramatic haemodynamic variability. As a result, individuals suffering from baroreceptor failure likely have been undertreated. Herein, we report a case of a patient with a history of radiation to the neck for squamous cell carcinoma of the tongue and resultant baroreceptor failure resulting in syncope.


  • Contributors All authors contributed equally to this paper. All had substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work, or the acquisition, analysis or interpretation of data, drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content, final approval of the version published and agreed to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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