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Meaning of Kreislaufprobleme / Kreislaufstörung

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OK, when I first got here, a fellow ex-pat warned me that my German co-workers would someday call in with "Kreislauf Probleme." I laughed at this thinking that my German co-workers--all between the ages of 25 and 40--were too young to suffer such infirmity. Well what do you know...within the last three weeks, 3 of the 9 (9 including me that is) have called in sick with Kreislauf Probleme, gone home sick with Kreislauf Probleme, or just complained non-stop about Kreislauf Probleme.

 

As a hearty American used to coming in to work and making it through the day, strep throat/ear infection/bad cold/slight fever or not, I just don't get it. What are Kreislauf Probleme (I know they're circulation problems), how do you get 'em, and why do only Germans seems to suffer from them?

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Krista,

I work in an English-speakers only translation agency and not all that long ago we had a rather amusing lunchtime with our collection of medical dictionaries... chasing the Kreislauf phenomenon round the dictionaries...

 

The final concensus was that it all appears to be "in the mind"... Apparently the Brits use the excuse 'back trouble' when they don't fancy going to work/fancy leaving hte office early and the Germans use Kreislauf Probleme or Kreislaufkollapse! Personally I think if my Kreislauf was to collapse I would probably curl up and die .. but the Germans suffer from it on a regular basis without any lasting damage... the best translation we were able to come up with was ... I'm feeling a bit under the weather!

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I'm with Koala on this one. Kreislaufprobleme are the summer equivalent of a cold (which is also a perfectly acceptable excuse to stay at home). Germans are basically so obsessed with their health that as soon as they feel a bit light headed when it's 40° outside, or in winter as soon as they have to clear their throats, they stay at home. Who knows what it could turn into otherwise? Antoehr example for this obsession with health are those toilets with the ledges, so you can have a good look at what you've left behind...

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Nah, those toilets don't have anything to do with the German's obsession with their health Kathie. Just gives them an excuse to clean throughout the day.

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to me "kreislaufproblem" means simply, you are so fucking tired that you can hardly get out of bed. where you have absolutely no energy and get really dizzy if you stand up too quickly or turn your head too fast or can't even manage to lather up the soap in your hair. since i have really low blood pressure, i feel like this all the time, okay not so bad, but i could sleep 10 hours a day and still be tired!

 

when i want to play hooky, i say i have "magen/darm" problems. nothing like having the shits at work. and since we all use the same toilet, they're like "ooooh, stay home!" `cause it is contagious! :o

 

strangely, last year the average no. of days a german missed work because of sickness dropped down to 3.8 or so.

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When someone says that they have "Kreislaufprobleme", what do they actually mean? In English, "circulation problems" tends to imply (at least to me) that you have something wrong with the blood supply to your arms and legs: numb fingers and toes, varicose veins, that kind of thing.

 

But I have the impression that "Kreislaufprobleme" has more to do with feeling faint/dizzy... or something like that. Still can't work out what exactly it's supposed to mean or how it might be described in English.

 

Anyone have any ideas?

 

Topics merged by admin

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Kreislaufprobleme as Elf said, are essentially the result of low blood pressure. Light-headedness, dizziness, fainting, etc. Some people just prefer not to have to faint first.

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And the best cure for "circulation problems" I would have thought is to get off your ass and get some exercise - like going to work!

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This is the best thread ev-ah.

 

I was thinking the same thing last week when one of my colleagues said he had Kreislaufprobleme, and another one says it every other day, it seems. It's like the problem with getting neck aches from open windows and wind. :wacko: (ha ha, I love that this smiley's called "wacko")

 

Then, on Sunday, after being at the Chiemsee reggae festival all day Saturday and drinking too many beck's beers, I was exhausted. I slept all day and still managed to get to sleep Sunday night. I wondered to myself, "could this be a Kreislaufproblem?" But I couldn't answer my own question, because I, and no one else seems to know what that is. But I would also go with this:

 

 

to me "kreislaufproblem" means simply, you are so fucking tired that you can hardly get out of bed. where you have absolutely no energy and get really dizzy if you stand up too quickly or turn your head too fast or can't even manage to lather up the soap in your hair. since i have really low blood pressure, i feel like this all the time, okay not so bad, but i could sleep 10 hours a day and still be tired!
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From The Xenophobe's Guide to the Germans:

 

 

Virtually all Germans have health problems, and if they don't, there must be something wrong with them. Most of what ails them is stress related. No nation was ever more stressed, but this is understandable. After all, running Europe can take it out of you. The delicacy of the German constitution has long been recognized, and smoothly running systems put in place to keep it going. In the 1880s Bismarck set up a national health insurance scheme. Today that national health insurance underpins a vast and wonderful network of doctors, specialists, hospitals and spas. As with the French, the Germans devote enormous resources to the treatment of an illness that doesn't exist, the notorious Kreislaufstörung. While the rest of us go to meet our maker once our circulation stops, the Germans routinely recover from it and go on to lead useful and productive lives. Once they are good at it, they can have a Kreislaufstörung as often as twice a month without it seriously impairing their social life. Treatment for this frightening disease varies. However, it has been shown to respond positively to three weeks on a Greek beach.
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Actually this mystery illness has been largely stamped out. At least in Financial Services. I haven't heard that excuse in 6-7 years. In the early 90's it was a daily occurrence.

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And the best cure for "circulation problems" I would have thought is to get off your ass and get some exercise - like going to work!

I will be sure to pass this on to my co-worker who is hospitalized for six weeks being checked for the reason for her palpitations, dizzyness and fainting spells. It should get a laugh from her and the cardiologist.

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also haven't heard this excuse in yonks either. perhaps it's been eradicated!

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Actually this mystery illness has been largely stamped out.

not in Bayern. The excuse is usually brought up in conjunction with Fön.

 

edit: MB, I've heard it quite often. People are always jammering about the Fön and their Kreislauf in our office. Usually restricted to the 40+ crowd but you occasionally get the odd 20 something wilting lilly.

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Kreislaufprobleme as Elf said, are essentially the result of low blood pressure. Light-headedness, dizziness, fainting, etc. Some people just prefer not to have to faint first.

Brings to mind Victorian ladies, with their fainting fits, "hysterics" and "feeble circulation" (see below). Apparently to be tackled with ... smelling salts and open windows ... ;)

 

http://www.victorianlondon.org/cassells/cassells-4.htm

 

 

DOMESTIC SURGERY.-V.

 

SUSPENDED ANIMATION.

 

UNDER the head of suspended animation are included all those cases of apparent death in which, by the judicious application of appropriate remedies, the patient may be restored to vitality and health. The simplest form of suspended animation is that seen in fainting, when, from the effects of heat or over-exertion (combined possibly with tight lacing), a young lady becomes pale, falls down insensible, and appears scarcely to breathe. The admission of fresh air is of the first importance, and she should be immediately placed near an open window, and in the recumbent position. so that the flow of blood to the head may be accelerated. At the same time, any tightness of dress should be at once remedied, and a little cold water sprinkled in the face. The use of smelling-salts is occasionally of service in rousing a patient, but care must be taken not to apply them too vigorously, for fear of irritating the nose. If, as sometimes happens, a fainting-fit is only the prelude to a fit of hysterics, the patient should be thoroughly roused by the free application of cold water, so soon as the hysterical sobbings begin to show themselves, and a brisk walk up and down the room, between two not too sympathising friends, will then probably avert a domestic catastrophe which is always annoying to all concerned. Persons with a feeble circulation, and, therefore, more liable to faintness, may be glad to know that they can often avert a fainting-fit when they feel it coming on, by at once lying down flat on a sofa; or, if from position - as in church - this is impossible, then that bowing the head well down on the knees will have the same effect.

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i'm a 20-something with a lilting willy - is this a kreislaufprobleme?

More like a kreisis! :P

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