Vertigo is defined as a loss of balance due to sensation and perception of rotation or spinning with or without movement. It can be accompanied by nausea and in some more severe cases vomiting as well. Vertigo is typically temporary, but in some cases may be more chronic in nature. It affects populations of all ages and gender.
Vertigo symptoms can be due to a medical cause, medications…etc. Which is why it is very important that a medical follow up be done by your family physician.
One type of vertigo call Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV), is actually quite common; and occurs with specific head or body positions. When all medical possibilities have been ruled out, vertigo is not dangerous by nature, but can certainly be very disabling while present. The risk of fall associated with significant vertigo in the elderly is high and can lead to fall fractures.
Your family physician will be able to refer you to either ENT or Audiology services to help determine the cause of your vertigo symptoms:
80% or more of individuals having vertigo can be provided with immediate relief using a combination of medications and positional exercises. These exercises can be easily done at home and will be well explained to you by your attending clinical
20% or less of patient having vertigo will need to have a more specialized and long term program which may include services from the following professionals; Audiology, Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, mental health services …etc
Your family physician may prescribe medications to help with your vertigo symtpoms such as Betahistine, Antivert, Bonine, and Stemetil to name a few. It is very important that these be used as prescribed by your physician. These will not cure your vertigo, but will provide relief until a rehabilitative program will be established to help.
For more information on vertigo, please talk with your family physician or communicate with Dr Pradeep Shenoy ENT.