Vertigo is a very common disorder which affects “ALL” irrespective of “AGE, GENDER, SOCIAL STATUS, GEOGRAPHY”. It is not an exaggeration to say that most of the people would have experienced vertigo in some form at least once in a lifetime.
In spite of vertigo being so common, it is usually underdiagnosed and undertreated the patients experience a lot of confusion, frustration, helplessness; majorly due to the disease itself and partly due to ignorance of the family, friends, peers towards vertigo and its effects.
It is not uncommon to see Vertigo patients suffering from it for years without proper diagnosis and treatment.
Human balance system mainly consists of the following:
Vertigo can present in various ways. If you have any of the following symptoms, you need Vertigo Evaluation:
- Suddenly standing up
- Getting up from bed
- Turning in bed to left or right
- Looking up or down
- When bending down
- On sudden movement (looking back or turning)
The feeling of imbalance or discomfort:
- On walking
- Crowded places
- Crossing roads with heavy traffic
- Walking in dim light
- Walking in a supermarket or mall
- While watching TV or movies in the theatre
Associated hearing problems:
- Difficulty in hearing
- Ringing sounds in the ear (Tinnitus)
- Difficulty in hearing + Tinnitus + Giddiness
- Giddiness + Headache
Usually, the patients would be suffering for a long time and would have typically consulted many physicians for the problem before being seeing a neurologist or a neuro-otologist (balance specialist).
Diagnosis is made by:
- Thorough history (Most important)
- Detailed neuro–otological examination
- Relevant hearing, balance, imaging investigations
Treatment: Depends on the underlying cause. It may involve:
- Simple bedside maneuvers
- Medications, diet
- Lifestyle changes
- Physical exercises
- Occasionally inner ear injections
- Rarely surgery
Consult your Neurologist or Neuro-otologist if you have Vertigo.