Vertigo is a common condition that affects “ALL”, regardless of “AGE, GENDER, SOCIAL STATUS, GEOGRAPHY”. It is no exaggeration to say that most people have experienced vertigo in some form at least once in their lives.
Despite being so common, vertigo is usually underdiagnosed and undertreated. The patients experience a lot of confusion, frustration and helplessness; mainly because of the disease itself and partly because of ignorance of the family, friends, peers about vertigo and its consequences.
It is not uncommon for vertigo patients to suffer for years without proper diagnosis and treatment.
The human balance system mainly consists of the following:
Vertigo can present itself in different ways. If you have any of the following symptoms, you need Vertigo Evaluation:
- Suddenly get up
- Get up from bed
- Turning in bed to the left or right
- Look up or down
- When bending over
- In case of sudden movement (looking behind or turning)
The feeling of imbalance or discomfort:
- Busy places
- Crossing roads with heavy traffic
- Walk in low light
- Walking into a supermarket or shopping mall
- While watching TV or movies in the cinema
Associated hearing problems:
- Difficulty hearing
- Ringtones in the Ear (Tinnitus)
- Difficulty hearing + Tinnitus + Dizziness
- Dizziness + Headache
Usually the patients would suffer for a long time and would typically have consulted many doctors for the problem before going to a neurologist or a neuro-otologist (balance specialist).
The diagnosis is made by:
- In-depth history (most important)
- Detailed neuro,otological examination
- Relevant hearing, balance, imaging studies
Treatment: Depends on the underlying cause. It could be:
- Simple bed maneuvers
- Medicines, diet
- lifestyle changes
- Physical exercises
- Occasional injections in the inner ear
Consult your neurologist or neuro-otologist if you have vertigo.
Dr. Tejaswini Patel, Consultant – Neurology, Mazumdar Shaw Medical Center, Bommasandra