Expert care to help you enjoy life and live safely

Frequent dizziness or lightheadedness that affects a child’s daily activities might be a sign of POTS.

POTS is a condition where too little blood reaches the brain when moving from a lying to a standing position. It’s a form of dysautonomia. This term refers to disorders that affect the part of the nervous system in charge of involuntary actions like blood pressure and heart rate control. These are actions that we don’t consciously control.

UW Health Kids offers a special clinic for kids 18 years of age and younger with autonomic disorders like POTS. We can evaluate your child’s symptoms. Based on our findings, we make sure they get the expert care they need to control those symptoms, enjoy life and live safely.

Symptoms and diagnosis

Putting the pieces together to make a diagnosis

We’ve treated hundreds of children with POTS and the symptoms associated with it. Our experience helps us diagnose children quickly and get them the help they need.


Many kids experience POTS symptoms when they stand up from a lying position. These symptoms can include:

  • Blurred vision

  • Dizziness or lightheadedness

  • Fainting

  • Fast, pounding heartbeat

Other symptoms children with dysautonomia may have include:

  • Abnormal sweating (too much or too little)

  • Extreme fatigue

  • Gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms such as abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation or feeling full quickly

  • Headaches

  • Inability to exercise like they once could

  • Purple and splotchy arms and legs

  • Sensitivity to heat or cold

  • Trouble concentrating


To evaluate symptoms, we do an exam and ask about your child’s medical history. If needed, we might do tests such as:

Measures your child’s heart rate and blood pressure when they move from lying down to standing up

Uses sound waves to create moving pictures of your child’s heart

Looks at the electrical activity of your child’s heart

Evaluates how your child’s heart responds to exercise while they walk on a treadmill

Allows us to record your child’s heart activity while they are at home

Evaluates your child’s blood and urine to look for medical conditions

Smiling child with sign reading UW Health Kids
UW Health Kids
Our pediatric experts have served the special needs of children for more than 100 years. We focus on each child’s unique needs and offer social and emotional support to help you and your child face even the most complex condition. Our long history includes the creation of medical advances that save lives around the world. Together, we get your child back to health and enjoying being a kid.

Treatment and research

Treatment helps your child have a childhood

POTS can make the daily activities most kids take for granted very difficult. UW Health Kids specialists focus on improving symptoms so kids can be kids.

We look at each child to determine how best to help them. If needed, we can bring in additional specialists to address specific concerns. We work hard to try and have you meet with all the providers your child needs in one visit to our clinic.

Most patients will follow a general treatment plan (pdf).

It focuses on:

  • Drinking a lot of fluids

  • Adding extra salt to the diet

  • Getting regular exercise (pdf)

  • Wearing compression stockings

 Sometimes we also prescribe medicines to help control symptoms.

Patient support and services

Help for you to help your child

Meet one of our patients

For a lot of kids, going to school is nothing to get too excited about. Kelleigh was thrilled to get back to class. For a long time, just getting out of bed each day was a chore. The POTS Clinic at UW Health changed everything. Watch Kelleigh's story


These resources and organizations can help you learn more about POTS and its symptoms and treatments.

Meet our team

Child-centered expertise and experience

Our team specializes in POTS and dysautonomia. Your child will get the best possible care from us.

Our providers


Care close to home

Many families can see a UW Health Kids pediatric cardiologist in a location closer to home than Madison. Aside from American Family Children’s Hospital in Madison, UW Health Kids teams are located in pediatric cardiology clinics in seven Wisconsin communities and Rockford, Ill.