While many people face Vertigo on a daily basis & medical professionals might have been able to put many symptoms in a list, the truth remains that Vertigo is a highly subjective sensation. The exact feelings of a Vertigo patient can be known by none other than the patient themselves, & vary depending on their medical history, the exact underlying cause of Vertigo, & age. In this article know the top 10 questions for must ask your vertigo doctor.
Being a highly subjective condition, Vertigo patients are prone to misdiagnosis a lot. In these cases of inadequate evaluation, Vertigo treatment might not work on patients as imagined. Even though it might feel like a waste of time & your prior visits to the doctor might have proved unfruitful, it is essential that you don’t stop consulting with your doctor.
Continuing your treatment & at the same time, evaluating it frequently to give yourself room to explore new, more effective Vertigo treatment strategies, is the only way towards resolution of your Vertigo symptoms. If you’ve been experiencing Vertigo symptoms for quite some time now & they haven’t resolved on their own, then it’s time to visit a Vertigo specialist. Having a general, basic understanding of your condition helps in your Vertigo treatment, as does asking the right questions to your Vertigo doctor.
In this article, we tell you the 10 questions along with their right answers, to ask your Vertigo specialist when you’re both looking at an adequate, comprehensive Vertigo treatment plan for your particular condition.
1. What is Vertigo?
Although each individual case is different, as a blanket definition Vertigo can be best described as a feeling or sensation of moving, spinning, or rotating even when you’re perfectly still. Vertigo is not a condition in itself, rather a symptom of an already underlying illness that might have been diagnosed or not. Vertigo patients often report feelings of dizziness, disorientation, loss of balance, nausea, vomiting, migraine headaches, & motion sickness during an episode.
These symptoms can last from anywhere between a few minutes to a few hours, & usually resolve on their own. In cases where they don’t go away on their own, immediate medical help might be needed for the patient. Vertigo attacks are usually triggered by a change in the head position or performing a movement(like sitting down, standing up, or running) suddenly or too quickly.
Although in certain cases, Vertigo doesn’t have any cause & can occur all of a sudden without any known trigger.
2. What are the types of Vertigo, & which one do I have?
Like many other illnesses, Vertigo too has more than one type. It is broadly divided into two categories: Peripheral Vertigo & Central Vertigo. Have a look at the types of Vertigo in detail below:
- Peripheral Vertigo: Peripheral Vertigo is caused by issues in the inner ear areas that control the balance of a person. These areas include the Vestibular labyrinth, the semicircular canals, & the vestibular nerves. One of the most common manifestations of peripheral vertigo is BPPV, or Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo.
- Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo(BPPV): BPPV is the most common type of Vertigo that patients suffer from, & is caused by an inner ear problem. Infections of the inner ear like Meniere’s Disease in which fluid fills up inside the inner ear leading to a feeling of fullness or pressure, & tinnitus(ringing inside the ear), can lead to BPPV Vertigo.
An injury to the head or neck can also lead to BPPV, so can any viral illness or ear infection.
The most natural cause of BPPV is the displacement of tiny calcium carbonate crystals called the otoliths, which normally lie inside the inner ear, from their original position to inside the semicircular canal. These crystals then line up the sensitive nerve hairs inside the semicircular canals, making them send out conflicting balance signals to the brain thus leading to dizziness & disorientation.
- Central Vertigo: Central Vertigo is caused by a problem with the patient’s brain, usually in the brain stem or the rear part of the brain, also called the cerebellum.
Many factors can contribute to Central Vertigo, including blood vessel disease, some medications such as aspirin, anticonvulsants, & excessive consumption of alcohol.
Some prior medical conditions can also lead to central Vertigo, like Multiple Sclerosis, Perilymph Fistula, seizures(although less frequently), stroke, cancerous & non-cancerous tumors, & Vestibular migraines.
Your doctor will be able to determine which type of Vertigo you’re suffering from, based on certain Vertigo tests like VNG test, ENG test, Dix-Hallpike maneuver, vHIT tests, & more.
Once the proper cause & type of your Vertigo is determined, your doctor will be able to draw up a better, more accurate Vertigo treatment plan for you.
3. What are the various Vertigo treatments?
Vertigo treatments are based on the exact diagnosis given to you by your Vertigo doctor, your medical history, & the severity, intensity, & frequency of your Vertigo symptoms. That said, Vertigo treatment comprises Vertigo medicines & various Vertigo home remedies to relieve you of your Vertigo symptoms. Vertigo home remedies include various Vertigo tablets & medicines that help patients feel better & live better quality lives.
For patients of BPPV, certain Vertigo exercises like the Epley Maneuver, which is also called the Canalith repositioning maneuver, the Half-Somersault maneuver, & the Semont-Foster maneuver might prove to be helpful in relieving the symptoms of Vertigo.
These exercises target the affected ear & involve moving the head & the body in certain ways & directions to displace the calcium carbonate crystals lodged in the semicircular canal, & reinstate them to their original position. These exercises need to be performed around 4-5 times a day, & about 3 days a week to experience absolute relief from their Vertigo symptoms.
Besides these Vertigo exercises & Vertigo home remedies, various Vertigo medicines & Vertigo tablets can also be used. These Vertigo tablets include Vertin tablet, Meclizine tablet, Promethazine tablets, Ginkgo Biloba tablets, & Stugeron-Forte tablets among various others. You’ll need to consult with your doctor before you decide to start the intake of any of these Vertigo medicines.
In certain cases, where the symptoms don’t resolve on their own, surgery might be needed to help the patient get relief from their symptoms.
4. Do Vertigo symptoms resemble the symptoms of other diseases as well?
As a relatively common occurrence, the symptoms of Vertigo get confused with the symptoms of other diseases a lot. This generally happens because the word ‘dizziness’ is associated with a lot of other disorders as well. Hence, in order to be accurately diagnosed, it’s important to go to an experienced Vertigo expert for the same.
5. Can the body make up for the loss in balance arising from Vertigo?
Yes, the body can. Vestibular rehabilitation, as a therapy for Vertigo treatment, depends on this aspect only. It aims to train the body through various exercises, to adjust to the loss in the coordination between the vestibular nerve & the brain. Through these exercises, the body learns to make up & bring in place different mechanisms to cope with the damage done to the vestibular system, thus helping the patients regain balance.
6. Does age play a role in being diagnosed with Vertigo?
Yes. People are more likely to be diagnosed with Vertigo when they are middle aged. As a general rule, people aged over 50 years are more likely to be diagnosed with Vertigo as a result of degenerative age issues with the central nervous system.
7. Is medically diagnosed Vertigo the same as simulated Vertigo?
No. Medically diagnosed Vertigo has far more severe, long lasting, & recurrent symptoms than simulated Vertigo, the kind you get from playing Augmented Reality video games or spinning in circles for too long.
Simulated Vertigo also goes away within a short period of time & never reoccurs until you partake in the same activity again, something that isn’t true of medically diagnosed vertigo.
8. Can Vertigo be caused by anxiety or medications?
In short, yes. Anxiety, especially generalized anxiety, leads one to feel overwhelmed & fearful all the time. In response to fear, the body releases certain chemicals that help prepare the body for combat, causing stiffness of muscles, sweatiness, & dizziness.
During an anxiety attack, most patients report feeling dizzy & disoriented, along with feeling nauseous & lightheaded, all of which can be categorized as general symptoms of Vertigo. Certain medications, famously blood pressure medications, anticonvulsants, aspirin, & certain antiviral medicines can also lead to symptoms of Vertigo.
9. Can viral infections give rise to Vertigo?
Yes. Viral infections like labyrinthitis, common cold, flu, & other illnesses can lead the patient to feel dizzy & disoriented, along with feeling nauseous. However, these symptoms tend to go away as soon as the illness resolves. If they don’t go away & persist, the patient is most likely suffering from recurrent Vertigo, or there is some other underlying illness that is causing the symptoms.
10. How long will it take for my Vertigo to resolve?
In some cases, depending on the exact diagnosis of your condition, your doctor can determine the exact duration within which your Vertigo symptoms can automatically resolve. However, in certain cases, Vertigo doesn’t go away & keeps recurring. In such cases, there usually is no known cause & your doctor might prescribe you certain vertigo medicines & Vertigo home remedies that might help with your symptoms. Looking for expert & experienced Vertigo specialists to treat your Vertigo?
Know more about Vertigo, its symptoms, diagnosis, & treatment options, here.