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Swallow (deglutition) syncope
  1. Zafir Islam,
  2. Frazer Warricker,
  3. Benoy N Shah
  1. Wessex Cardiac Centre, University Hospital Southampton, Southampton, Hampshire, UK
  1. Correspondence to Benoy N Shah, Cardiac Administration Offices, Level E North Wing, Southampton General Hospital, Tremona Road, Southampton, Hampshire SO16 6YD, UK; benoy{at}

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Swallow syncope, characterised by transient loss of consciousness induced by swallowing, is a rare form of neurally mediated syncope. We present ECG tracings from a patient with a clear history of swallow syncope with brief discussion on management options.


A 60-year-old lady presented with a 5-year history of light-headedness and loss of consciousness while eating certain foods, particularly large chunks of bread. There were no other associated symptoms and no symptoms unrelated to mealtimes. She had no past medical history and was not taking any medications. Physical examination, resting 12-lead ECG and transthoracic echocardiography were all normal.

On the basis of the history, a diagnosis …

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  • Contributors BNS conceived the idea for the article. The first draft was written by ZI and FW and edited by BNS. BNS is the corresponding author and guarantor for the article.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

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