Three years ago I woke up and experienced vertigo, felt like I was going to fall over, ended up laying back down and the room was spinning. I ended up very sick that morning and for about 4 months following, I had severe episodes of dizziness and room spinning. I have not been able to sleep on my right side since and immediately feel dizzy and nauseous if I do. I sleep elevated, so much that I often have headaches and have to visit the chiropractor. Both of my ears have been ringing since this happened 3 years ago.
I went to an ENT specialist, had a hearing test, MRI and a couple years later was finally referred to a physical therapist. She diagnosed me with Vestibular Hypofunction or BPPV, treated me with the Epley maneuver and sent me home with physical therapy exercises. These exercises are meant to make you dizzy - eye/head movement exercises (kinda similar to lifting weights to build muscle) - they are to train the brain to work with the parts of the ear I guess. I think the time frame for them, to expect improvement is 4-6 weeks, exercises each day, sometimes twice a day.
The other day I had another episode of vertigo and am now unable to sleep on my left side as I am immediately dizzy and the room is spinning. Therefore, I am only able to sleep on my back, with 3 or 4 pillows to keep me elevated, otherwise I feel like I'm falling backwards. My ears still ring constantly.
Last edited by jaddy; 10-23-2008 at 12:08 PM.
Reason: change in diagnosis
wanted to express my sympathy, I have suffered from labyrinthitis now for some months and when I have a serious attack I cannot move for 5 hours. I haven't done all the tests to find out exactly what causes it. And from what I gather from this website, it may be useless anyway.
But I seem to understand some "patterns" to my illness. It gets triggered when I move my head (like doing abdominals by lifting head, or turning head as in dancing), when I get too tired (long bicycle trips under the sun), when I get stressed or do not eat properly.
In any case, I would like some feedback on healthy living, I don't think this is provoked by any food, alcohol or something like that but I seem to notice that when I'm really taking care of myself, it doesn't appear or is less serious.
The terrible thing it does to you, anyway, is the way you are isolated from others. I no longer feel like going out, doing things, I'm afraid to travel...
Anyone have some ideas about climate and dizziness? Meaning, hot, damp, cold weather?
Best to see a neurotologist and get the inner ear testing. These docs can help you find out if you are dealing with BPPV, uncompensated VN, or migraine. BPPV is often correlated with migraine. Migraine can be treated with medications. See the book Heal Your Headache for more info about migraine issues. See VEDA web site for help finding a doc.
Jo, I am sorry to hear about how you're feeling. I appreciate the response. In terms of weather, the only thing I can add to this is that since I had my first episode of vertigo, I cannot handle any amount of heat. If the temperature, inside or outside is warm at all, and sometimes if is cool for someone else, it's warm for me. I am constantly finding ways to cool off. I have no idea if it's related, but I am curious...
I have started to keep a 'headache' and 'dizzy' journal, so I hope to find some pattern in this.
violet6, thank you for the post. any information is helpful. i saw a different neurologist last week and am scheduled for a VENG (VideoElectronystagmography) this week. i will update once i have the test results. i am anxious...
hi everyone, & thanks for replies. Just wanted to suggest a possiblity. My labyrinthitis started due to other health problems, but I was sure there had to be some nutrition factor, and after searching the web like a haystack I found that a lack of zinc not only causes eye problems, but can also affect the cochlea (inner ear) and that people with tinnitus (ringing ears) may be lacking this mineral, a website contained a statement by a doctor that one in every four persons with ringing ears may be cured by high doses of zinc. This makes sense as I have been an almost-vegetarian for about a year and it is doubtful whether the zinc in plants is absorbed by the body, in other words, a vegetarian is almost SURE to get too little zinc (only decent source is oysters, or three courses of meat a day).. worth trying?
Last edited by jomon1961; 10-14-2008 at 02:48 AM.
Reason: typing mistake
Hi there! I think a vegetarian diet can wreak havoc on the body. I was vegetarian for 15 years and am sure it was not ideal--just wasn't getting the stuff I needed. Started eating meat again when I was pregnant...craved it then and haven't looked back. Not tons of meat, just a bit. I do take zinc every day to combat viruses, but it has not helped my dizziness...however, I haven't been sick much at all since I started taking all of my supplements; alas, the dizziness remains. Still, I think it's important to take all of these extra vitamins, etc...helps to support our body's fight against whatever is causing the imbalance/dizzies.
I had a VENG test and it came back normal. The neurologist prescribed Naproxen and Pamelor because he thinks headaches and neck pain may be the cause of my dizziness. I don't feel like they are, as I've been keeping a headache diary. After my last episode of vertigo about a month ago, I tried reading the other night and cannot even read a paragraph without getting dizzy. Reading all of the threads online also tend to make me feel off balance. Anyway, I hesitate to just start taking these drugs. I am contemplating a few options because otherwise, the neurologist has no answers for me. He told me that straight up. Should I take the medication, start physical therapy again or even try acupuncture??? He did state that I don't have BPPV.
Last edited by jaddy; 10-23-2008 at 12:08 PM.
Reason: change in diagnosis
your symptoms are very different from mine but I would try with magnesium, calcium, zinc, b vits and C vit. Magnesium relaxes nerves and cramps. As far as I have understood, with labyrinthitis the docs can alleviate symptoms, diagnose and cross their fingers, but basically either it heals by itself, or not. Still, I am slowly improving, only one vertigo attack in three months, some ringing but no longer loud ringing and a feeling that my head is stuffed with cotton.. whether I'll heal completely is early to tell as it takes 6 months (at least that's what I found a medical doctor say in the web). Personally I'd try the health approach first but maybe someone else has more experience.
Actually yes, I am completely cured. My vertigo/labyrinthisis/meniers or whatever you want to call it was caused by an abscess which had infected the sinusite canals with bacteria (lucky I didn't die), all the doctors said the things were completely unrelated (probably they were afraid of lawsuits or protecting colleagues or something),as I had been misdiagnosed for years... anyway all these problems started before I got operated, and continued for about 8 months after. I am convinced my healthy living gradually fixed my general health, & the condition. I still have ringing in one ear, which comes and goes, but I think a lot of people have that problem and it's hard to cure. So all I can say is try to work on general health. I never took medicines of any kind once I was off the antibiotics, maybe I'm wrong but I'm sort of convinced that drugs fix one thing & damage another.. It's more complicated to build health than fight illness.. hope you get well!