Vertigo… When The World Keeps Spinning Around
Houston Chiropractor Comments: A couple times a year I see a patient who has recently developed signs of vertigo and the result can be debilitating. Sometimes it feels like the world is spinning around you and sometimes you are spinning around the world. The dizziness can be mild or severe enough that you can’t drive or function. It can last a few moments, a few hours or it can just come and go.
The first thing that needs to be done is to realize that vertigo is a symptom not a specific condition. As such, we need to determine the cause of the vertigo. Is the cause more central (ie. from the central nervous system) or peripheral (ie. from the inner ear)? A proper examination will help immensely.
Possible causes of vertigo are benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). This occurs when little calcium particles (canaliths) clump together in the inner ear canal and move around during sudden motions.
Another cause is Meinere’s disease. This is a disease that increases the pressure and fluid in the ear resulting in vertigo and ringing in the ear (tinnitus).
The vertigo can also be caused by vestibular neuritis. This is usually due to a viral infection causing inflammation in the nerves of the inner ear.
Additional causes of vertigo are certain types of medication, a stroke or tumor, dehydration or head/neck trauma.
The type of treatment rendered will be determined by the cause. For BPPV it is bets to use a canalith repositioning motion, such as the Epley maneuver or the guidelines by the American Academy of Neurology. I will post a video next week showing a series of head motions designed to get the canaliths in the correct position that I have found to work and can be taught to do at home. Some patients require vestibular rehabilitation which is a therapy designed on improving the vestibular system by improving ones balance and stability and minimizing dizziness and gaze instability. Spinal manipulation will help if there was any incidence of head or neck trauma. Medication or supplements are beneficial to help minimize any inner ear fluid buildup or secondary nausea. If the cause is from a tumor or a stroke then the appropriate medical referral should be made.
Dr. Ward Beecher practices at Beecher Chiropractic Clinic at 1001 Pineloch, Ste 700 Houston, TX 77062. You can schedule an appointment at BeecherChiropractic.com or by calling (281) 286-1300. If you have any questions regarding this blog, please comment below!