Stokes-Adams syndrome


Stokes-Adams syndrome is an abrupt, transient loss of consciousness due to a sudden but pronounced decrease in the cardiac output, which is caused by a paroxysmal shift in the mechanism of the heart beat.


  • 1761 – Giovanni Battista Morgagni described epileptic fits in a patient (a merchant of Padua) with a heart rate of 22
  • 1792 – Thomas Spens described similar in a 54 year old woman
  • 1827 – Robert Adams wrote a 100 page monograph which included descriptions of significant pathological findings from patients with seizures and bradycardia, observed when partial atrioventricular block is approaching completeness and less frequently in established complete heart block.
  • 1846 – William Stokes published his ‘Observations of some cases of permanently slow pulse’

Associated Persons

Alternative names

  • Stokes-Adams attack
  • Adams-Stokes syndrome


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the names behind the name

Emergency Medicine Trainee based in Perth, Western Australia. A wise man once told me "just work...harder"


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