Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by echopark, Jan 30, 2007.

  1. echopark

    echopark New Member

    can anyone suggest a restorative yoga dvd that could help? i have had cfs for almost a year....i am dizzy ALL THE TIME when standing or walking etc (i don't shop or cook or anything). i don't know if this is normal, it is very scary for me. but i can't walk or anything and i am afraid my muscles are weakening significantly. does anyone know what to do about this? of course hardy movement on the 'good days' gives me chest pains and makes me feel like i am going to die, so i think it would have to be pretty mellow. any advice anyone could give would be so so so very helpful
  2. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    I wrote this post about yoga, but upon reflection think it might be a bit complicated if you're feeling dizzy. I'm going to put it here anyway though, in case others are interested.


    I've never found a tape I like, but I have a little book that explains things quite clearly. It's even written by a CFS sufferer!!!

    The book is called "The Little Yoga Book," by Erika Dillman. The price is $9.99.

    It has line drawings and simple instructions for each of the poses.

    CFS patients often are advised to be careful with regard to standing poses. I took yoga classes for a time, and I did indeed find the standing poses quite wearing.

    When I do yoga at home, I stick pretty much to the following routine. It seems to give a pretty wide range of stretching without too much wear:

    Half Sun Salutes (up to 30)
    Cat (30-45 total)
    Downward Dog/Upward Dog (if I have energy)
    Child's Pose (to follow down/up dog)
    Hamstring Stretch (on back, one leg up at a time)
    Leg Stretch (on back, one leg to side at a time)
    Lying down Twist
    Legs against Wall

    I use a yoga belt for the hamstring stretch and leg stretch.

    I also use it for the cowhead. (This is the post where you reach behind and up with one hand, and over the shoulder and down with the other hand, and then try to grasp hands together. My hands do not grasp, unfortunately.)

    Shoulder stands (partial or full) are supposed to be pretty good for CFS. My shoulders are pretty stiff and so I've not yet worked on them much. They're a bit more strenuous than most of this stuff.

  3. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    Dizziness can be a part of CFS, but it's a part that should be able to be eliminated. That kind of thing can ruin your life. It's not a core part of the disease (like cognitive problems or limited energy) though. Rather, it's always (to my knowledge) a symptom that can be fixed.

    For starters:

    What is the dizziness like? For instance, does it feel like the room is spinning or tilting? Or is it more like feeling lightheaded and faint?

    How is your blood pressure?

    If you have a blood pressure cuff, try this. Stay seated for a while (5-10 minutes), then take your blood pressure. Then stand and take your pressure again. It should rise when you stand, but for many CFS sufferers it falls. This can create a lot of fatigue, even if happens only occasionally.

    Are you on any medications that might possibly cause dizziness?

    Do you feel like you have much sinus congestion (either deep inside or in front)? Do you happen to snore a lot, for instance?

    I don't have the answers, but maybe if we keep asking questions, you can start thinking about some different possibilities of what to pursue with your doctor.

    Best, Lisa

  4. echopark

    echopark New Member

    thank you so so much for the advice....all of it.

    the dizziness is more of a faint, lightheaded feeling. i have had my sitting to standing blood pressure taken a number of times, but it always seems to be normal. I'm not on any meds and though i have post nasal drip, i don't really have any bad sinus congestion.

    it just seems like when i try to get up and walk, even around the kitchen to make toast or stand say in the shower to wash my hair that i'm not steady and i need to sit down from fatigue, lack of balance.

    it is really embarrasing because i always need help walking and i am really limited in what i can do. i can't go to the grocery store or cook or do laundry or work or anything.

    i went to a neurologist who said there is nothing wrong with me though i was thinking of going for a second opinion.

    i can pinpoint the exact moment when this began almost a year ago. the thing is, i did have a eating disorder for 12 years prior to the onset of the CFS. i gave up the eating disorder and less then 2 months later began to feel very lightheaded and tired. i am wondering still if this could be a nutritional issue.

    i have kaiser so my health care practitioners are below par and really don't have any advice for me. i can honestly say that i am now disabled.

    so this is a long winded message, but i think maybe you are more educated on cfs then i am. i have wondered if this is not cfs at all but maybe something else.....heart problems (i received an echocardiogram but not a stress test), neurological problems, nutritional problems. i still don't know if my symptoms truly fit into the cfs diagnosis though i was given a diagnosis. i am to see my doctor on thursday and ask her for more tests, but i don;t know what she should be testing for really.

    anyways, any help or input or anything would be a blessed thing.

    thank you
  5. twerp

    twerp New Member

    My first symptom of CFS, and the most troublesome one, is lightheadedness. Feeling like I am about to pass out at any moment.

    I have seen neurologists, heart specialists, endocrinologists, the list goes on, and no one can discover a reason for this. The blood pressure test is always OK (lying down, sitting, standing).

    The only thing that helps me with this, and without which I literally would not be able to function, is Klonopin.

    As for yoga, I took a class in "gentle, meditative" yoga for about a year. Really enjoyed it, but then my fatigue increased to such a point that I could no longer attend. Have not found a good DVD yet.

    Hope this helps you.

    Oh, meant to add that I just posted to FunGirl for her husband's suggestions regarding the lightheadedness, so be sure to watch that post.

    [This Message was Edited on 01/31/2007]
  6. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    What do you mean by "blood pressure is okay"?

    Most doctors do not think that low blood pressure is a problem. My experienced is that anything at about 100/65 or lower can create feelings of lightheadedness though.

    I will come back and see if I can offer more thoughts.

  7. twerp

    twerp New Member

    my Dr. took my BP lying down, then sitting up, then standing up and it was always within the normal range.

    It does run on the low side most of the time, but it did so even before I became ill with CFS.

  8. pw7575

    pw7575 New Member

    I have had cfs for 5 years now and being lightheaded is also one of my symptoms. Mine is not as bad as yours but it is always a problem for me. I can get out to do stuff sometimes but I just feel dizzy and the longer I am up and about the worse it gets. I too have had some chest pain with my cfs.

    When I first got sick I saw over 20 different doctors/specialists including cardiologists and everything always turned up normal. That is when I got my CFS diagnosis. Mine started out with an acute virus from which I then developed CFS.

    I have low blood pressure which I know doesn't help my dizziness BUT I know that the CFS is the cause of the dizziness because I have had low blood pressure my whole life and never had problems with it (just the occasional head rush when standing up).

    So it very well could be CFS causing your symptoms even though you don't have low blood pressure.

    I would definitely get every test done to rule out anything else. Maybe get more tests done with the cardiologist if you feel that could be the problem.

    Do your doctors know about the eating disorder? It would be important to tell them about it. That may help determine some tests to have done and that may get them to do more heart tests.

    Do you have other symptoms besides the dizziness and the chest pains?

    Ok sorry this is long. I did have a yoga dvd called "AM and PM Yoga" by Rodney Yee & Patricia Walden. I haven't used it in a while but I remember it being very easy and not too taxing since I have CFS AND had never done yoga before. I think most everything was done sitting down.

    Take Care,
  9. shrtcak81

    shrtcak81 New Member

    I haven't tried any yoga DVDs yet, but I've seen some on that are just for people with fibromyalgia. One is called "Fibroga" 1 and 2. There is also one called "Yoga For Healing". They focus mainly on exercises for fibromyalgia. I'm going to order one of them soon.

  10. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    I'm going to type a section on this from a book called "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A treatment Guide" by Verrillo and Gellman.

    (In truth, everyone should have this book.)

    Please read my post called "BPPV." I will bump it to the top of the board.

    In my case, the vertigo was caused by a fungal yeast infection that made its way to my sinuses and pressed against my inner ear. Sometimes there are little calcium crystals in the inner ear, and the yeast can cause them to get lodged in a certain way.

    Yeast also can grow into the inner ear.

    Inner-ear yeast problems are one very convincing way to control yeast in the whole body. If you've not treated yeast in your gut, that is important regardless of whether you have inner ear problems.

    It's possible this isn't the right track either, but at least it will give you something to think about.


    Vertigo can add a very unsettling element to CFIDS. When the world suddenly turns sideways, starts spinning, or will not hold still, you cannot adjust. Simply lying in bed can be a Herculean task for people with severe vertigo, which, along with spatial disorientation, can produce nausea, headache, sweating, faintness, and feelings of panic. Many people with CFIDS experience vertigo as an inability to watch television or read. Others merely feel mild, transient dizziness.

    Vertigo is thought to be caused by an inner ear problem. The function of the labyrinth, the part of the inner ear that controls balance, can be altered as a result of viral or bacterial infection (labyrinthitis), reduced blood supply to the ear, or conditions that affect the brain (such as stroke or migraine).

    Balance disorders can also be caused by eye problems. Optometrist Dr. Roderic W. Gillilan says motion sickness can be caused by sensitivity to rapid eye movements, especially when seeing motion. His patients under go a process of desensitization called "dynamic adaptive vision therapy" in which they relearn how to use their eyes.

    The problem of vertigo in CFIDS is probably related to viral labyrinthitis. According to Dr. Samuel Whitaker, an otologist at the University of California at Irvine, patients with CFIDS may have a viral infection of the iner ear that causes a balance defect.

    Dr. Whitaker examined 11 CFIDS patients with vertigo and found that all had a viral condition called "endolymphatic hydrops." Patients with this condition are unable to adjust to the difference between what they are seeing and what their inner ear is telling them about their balance. They may feel that their bed is on its side and clutch it so as not to fall off, even though they can see it is upright.

    This condition is probably caused by the reactivation of viruses found in most patients with CFIDS.

    Other causes of vertigo in CFIDS may be alterations in inner ear fluid pressure caused by allergies, candida, infection, low blood pressure (neurally mediated hypotension), and sinus problems.

    Hypoglycemia can also cause light-headedness becasse it reduces glucose supplies to the brain.

    Some medications commonly prescribed to treat CFIDS (tricyclic antidepressants, for example) can cause vertigo.


    1) Diamox, a diuretic, reduces fluid pressure in the inner ear.

    2) Blood pressure medications such as nitroglycerin and calcium channel blockers may help when ear problems are caused by excessive pressure.

    3) Antivert, dramamine or scopalamine may be prescribed, but may produce unwanted psychological and neurological side effects.

    4) Herbs that increase circulations (e.g. gingko) may be beneficial for those who experience dizziness as a result of low blood pressure, poor circulation, or hypoglycemia. Vitamin B can often be helpful.

    Too much salt or sugar can create pressure fluctuations in inner ear.

    Resource: Vestibular disorders Association


    Note: This book was very up-to-date in 1997. It still is very helpful, but some treatment ideas have changed since then.

    Best, Lisa

  11. spacee

    spacee Member

    I take a couple at the Y. One teacher is definitely easier than the other. The easy one would take us through poses rather briskly and most of them were done seated on lying down. She likes to emphasis spine flexiblity.

    This last class I mentioned to her, "don't think that I haven't noticed that we are holding the poses alot longer". She said that if you do it faster, you gain flexibility. If you hold the pose longer, you gain strength".

    Something to keep in mind. I have never found a DVD but years ago had a small book explaining the poses. I don't remember the name though.


  12. echopark

    echopark New Member

    thank you all so much for your advice and information.

    last year was a hard year for me: gave up the eating disorder, divorce, pregnancy, the onset of cfs, miscarriage...all in this order. seeing a kinesiologist who has suggested it is adrenal overload.

    that said, Lisa, about viral labrynthitis, about a month before the onset of this, i was staying with someone who came down with it. the dizziness for me began not long after, but then this also coincided with the beginning of the pregnancy so who knows. i assumed it was the pg that was making me feel so horrible (dizziness, exhaustion, chest pains, heart palps) but after the miscarriage (i was only 1.5 months) the symptoms never went away and i was diagnosed with cfs. it seems that your history is similar?

    these days i am wondering: is there any cure? can you get better and if you can't, what is it that is going to make me hold onto this life? sounds really doomy i know but there you go. i have so much respect for all the women who live with this for years and stay positive. you would think that someone somewhere has come up with a proscribed treatment of herbs, nutrition, movement etc. no?