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jor-rose100 01-26-2006 10:26 AM

panic and viral labyrinthitis
sorry this is a little long , but you may be able to help myself oranyone else who is suffering with this. Iíve been sick for little more than three weeks. It all started when I was working out at the gym and i felt like my heart was racing really fast and I felt faint. So my doctor who happened to be there helped me out and relaxed me. I had been working out for months and never had that feeling. The rest of the weekend I felt funny and a little weak and that Saturday night i felt light headed, dizzy and I panicked and my mother called an ambulence. All my vital signs were normal but i was shaking and my heart felt like i was racing. They drew blood which came back normal took an exray of my heart and lungs which come back normal. So that night they released me saying that I probably have a virus. the next two weeks on and off i had symptoms of [U][U]nausea[/U], dizzyness,panic,anxiey,cold chills, shaking,heavy breathing and feeling week[/U]. And every other day i would go to my doctor and he would draw blood and it would come back normal. The second week of this my ears and head started feeling strange. My docter recommended that i see an ENT(ear nose and throat) docter. The ENT saw no evidence of an ear infection but he said it sounds like viral labyrinthitis, which canít be tested for and canít be treated. This week i saw a neurologist and he said i might also have panic disorder and that he seeís no evidence of something serious. I'm taking an MRI on in a two days. My questions are: Has anyone struggled with this before? And If I do have viral labyrinthitis, is Panic disorder likely to follow?

Tesss 01-26-2006 11:51 AM

Re: panic and viral labyrinthitis
I hope I can help as I have been suffering from viral labyrinthitis for a while. I am well over the worst.
I have had a lot of the symptoms that you have had, all the weakness, anxiety, shaking, lightheaded, dizzyness. I also had vertigo but hopefully you won't get that. The chills and achyness and weakness are all part of the virus. And, a lot of people get anxious just because of the nature of the illness and the way it affects everything. I lost a lot of confidence just because I felt so dizzy that I found it hard to do stuff independently.

The most important thing is to try to keep moving around. So try and go for a little walk. It may make you feel bad and don't overdo it but at the same time it doesn't help in the long run if you sit still and don't do anything. Your brain needs to get used to moving around, and doing activity.

Don't assume you will get some sort of panic disorder, but at the same time it may be useful to learn some deep breathing exercises to calm yourself when you feel stressed by this or how you are feeling. For me I have had this for ages and sometimes it can be hard to deal with. But deep breathing and taking lots of time to relax and have some laughs makes a huge difference. Hopefully you will recover over the next couple of weeks as for a lot of people this doesn't last that long.

Feel free to ask questions. YOu should post on the inner ears disorders board aswell as there they are all dealing with this sort of stuff.

Take care and best wishes

jor-rose100 01-26-2006 06:35 PM

Re: panic and viral labyrinthitis
Thanks for your help Tess.i reposted in inner ear disorders. Did they tell you that there is no way to test for viral labyrinthitis?

Tesss 01-27-2006 01:19 PM

Re: panic and viral labyrinthitis
Hi Jor-rose
Glad that helped.
They are right to say that there are no tests for vestibular neuronitis as it is a virus.
Hopefully the problems you are having are caused by inflammation only and within about 6 weeks you will be feeling a lot better and have no further problems.

In about 40% of cases there is permanent damage and you would have longer term effects as a result. If there is permanent damage they can do some tests to try to assess the extent of the damage and which ear the damage happened in. These tests aren't always correct though, I have inner ear damage but the tests came back negative. The accuracy of the tests depends on the skill of the person doing the tests and the person analysing the results of the tests. So there isn't a lot they can do to diagnose this really.

If you do get permanent damage there is some treatment you can get too, which is really helpful - called VRT - vestibular rehabilitation therapy. Hopefully you won't require this though.

So hw long have you been suffering now and how do you feel now? Are you able to be quite active or are you feeling awful with even small amounts of activity?

Best wishes

midniteangel 01-29-2006 08:05 PM

Re: panic and viral labyrinthitis
Yes, i have had that on and off since i am about 25, now 58...i had the mother of all attacks 4 yrs ago..they called it vertigo...was dizzy for 30 days straight..the only thing that helps is're still dizzy but you can cope. Just stay home till it's over. There's nothing more distressing then dizziness. It's a nightmare. There are doctors who specialize with dizziness and do a manuver that instantly cures you of it...I read about it and called around and sure enough we have some docs that do it, but they don't take medicaid....

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