Vertigo is a very debilitating symptom for a person to have. It is characterized by a spinning sensation that usually has some nystagmus (twitching of the eyes). Sometimes people are not treated properly for their condition, and hopefully this will help you get the right treatment.
The first thing to discuss is to know what can cause vertigo, and to deferentially diagnose this appropriately:
Injury to the balance centers of the CNS
- Lesion of the Cerebellum
- Lesion of the brainstem
- Chiari Malformation
Problems in the inner ear
- Benign Proxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)
- Meniere’s Disease
- Inner ear Infection (labrynthitis)
The most important and common reason for vertigo is BPPV, and once it has been deferentially diagnosed it can be treated very easily. BPPV is caused by the dislodging of a calcium carbonate crystal in the inner ear. That crystal then moves to acceleration centers located in the inner ears called semicircular canals. This gives the brain the sensation that they are accelerating even though they are still. Treatment is to move that crystal out of the semicircular canals. I tell my patients it is a lot like trying to get a guitar pick out of an acoustic guitar. However, patients often come into my clinic stating that they are diagnosed with this condition, but still have the vertigo symptoms. They usually are given an Eply Maneuver and some Antivert (meclizine).
When a patient comes into my clinic and BPPV is deferentially diagnosed I then try to figure out where the crystal located. This is the step that is usually skipped or inefficiently performed by previous practitioners.
Each inner ear has 3 semicircular canals. Each one senses a different sensation, so if a crystal was in each one of them, then treatment should be different depending on the canal being affected and the side affected.
- Sensation of spinning in the vertical axis (yaw axis)
- Sensation of spinning in the rostral-caudal axis (roll axis)
- Sensation of spinning in the sagittal plane (pitch axis)
Once the side and canals are detected, then a procedure to get this crystal dislodged from the canal is performed. The procedure is completely dependent of the side affected and the canal affected. It can take a few procedures, but using this diagnostic system has been extremely effective at helping my patients.
If you or anyone you know is suffering from vertigo please have them contact our office at 507-645-8000 or www.cannonpointe.com. There are also several other articles on our blog that others have found quite helpful in their everyday lives.