Neurologist: How to know when dizziness is serious

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It can be used to describe the feeling we get when we stand up quickly and feel unbalanced, that unstable feeling of movement when we are standing still or the feeling just before passing out.

The term “dizzy” is used to describe a variety of different feelings and sensations, and can mean something different to everyone.

Click here for a full list of vestibular symptoms.

“The way dizziness makes you feel, such as the sensation of the room spinning, feeling faint or as if you’ve lost your balance, provides clues for possible causes,” says Dr. Susan Lotkowski, D.O, director of the Memorial Hospital of Salem County in Mannington.

Vertigo causes a patient to feel like there is movement where there is none. It may cause feelings of tilting, spinning or falling, nausea, vomiting and even trouble walking or standing.

Common causes of vertigo include Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) which is intense, brief episodes of vertigo immediately following a change in the position of your head; inflammation in the inner ear which can cause an onset of intense vertigo that may persist for several days; Meniere’s Disease which involves a build-up of fluid in the inner ear, characterized by sudden episodes of vertigo lasting as long as several hours.

Meniere’s Disease can be accompanies by fluctuating hearing loss, ringing in the ear and a feeling of fullness in the affected ear.

Acoustic neuroma — a non-cancerous growth on the vestibular nerve — which connects the inner ear to your brain can also cause vertigo.

Disequilibrium, the loss of balance or feeling unsteady when you walk, is also a condition many people refer to as being dizzy.

Click here to search for a vestibular specialist in your area.

To help diagnose the problem, keep track of dizziness and try to be as exact as possible when describing the feeling, she suggested. When visiting the doctor, always bring along a list of any medications you’re taking.

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