Mast cells are a type of white blood cell that protects our bodies from bacteria and other foreign invaders. Sometimes mast cells can malfunction and react in situations where they should not. This is referred to as mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS) and can cause many symptoms, to include flushing, itching, dizziness, racing heart rate, anxiousness, headache, fatigue, “brain fog”, flu-like symptoms, numbness/tingling, and gastrointestinal problems. In some cases, people with MCAS to be extremely sensitive to scents, lotions, and other chemicals.
MCAS commonly occurs in people with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) and other hypermobility syndromes. MCAS is common in those with autonomic disorders, such as postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS). Many of the symptoms of Long COVID syndrome are suspected to be related to MCAS. Most doctors are not aware of MCAS. However, there are many treatments available to help.
Dr. Saperstein has cared for over 2,000 patients with MCAS. He and his team at the Center for Complex Neurology, EDS & POTS can diagnose and manage this puzzling and potentially debilitating condition.