Also called: Dysautonomia
Your autonomic nervous system is the part of your nervous system that controls involuntary actions, such as the beating of your heart and the widening or narrowing of your blood vessels. When something goes wrong in this system, it can cause serious problems, including
- Blood pressure problems
- Heart problems
- Trouble with breathing and swallowing
- Erectile dysfunction in men
Autonomic nervous system disorders can occur alone or as the result of another disease, such as Parkinson’s disease, alcoholism and diabetes. Problems can affect either part of the system, as in complex regional pain syndromes, or all of the system. Some types are temporary, but many worsen over time. When they affect your breathing or heart function, these disorders can be life-threatening.
Some autonomic nervous system disorders get better when an underlying disease is treated. Often, however, there is no cure. In that case, the goal of treatment is to improve symptoms.
NIH: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Horner syndrome is a disorder that affects the eye and surrounding tissues on one side of the face and results from paralysis of certain nerves. Horner syndrome can appear at any time of life; in about 5 percent of affected individuals, the disorder is present from birth (congenital).Horner syndrome is characterized by drooping of the upper eyelid (ptosis) on the affected side, a constricted pupil in the affected eye (miosis) resulting in unequal pupil size (anisocoria), and absent sweating (anhidrosis) on the affected side of the face. Sinking of the eye into its cavity (enophthalmos) and a bloodshot eye often occur in this disorder. In people with Horner syndrome that occurs before the age of 2, the colored part (iris) of the eyes may differ in color (iris heterochromia), with the iris of the affected eye being lighter in color than that of the unaffected eye. Individuals who develop Horner syndrome after age 2 do not generally have iris heterochromia.The abnormalities in the eye area related to Horner syndrome do not generally affect vision or health. However, the nerve damage that causes Horner syndrome may result from other health problems, some of which can be life-threatening.