Presyncope is a state of lightheadedness, muscular weakness, blurred vision, and feeling faint (as opposed to a syncope, which is actually fainting). Presyncope is most often cardiovascular in cause. In many people, lightheadedness is a symptom of orthostatic hypotension. Orthostatic hypotension occurs when blood pressure drops significantly when the patient stands from a supine (horizontal) or seated position. If loss of consciousness occurs in this situation, it is termed syncope.
The tilt table test is an evaluative clinical test to help identify postural hypotension, a common cause of presyncope or syncope. A tilt angle of 60 and 70 degrees is optimal and maintains a high degree of specificity. A positive sign with the tilt table test must be taken in context of patient history, with consideration of pertinent clinical findings before coming to a conclusion.
^ abNatale, A., Akhtar, M., Jazayeri, M., Dhala, A., Blanck, Z., Deshpande, S., et al. (1995). Provocation of Hypotension During Head-Up Tilt Testing in Subjects With No History of Syncope or Presyncop. American Heart Association, (92), 54-58. doi: 10.1161/01.CIR.92.1.54; url: http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/92/1/54.full