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The Vestibular Patient Experience

Vestibular disorders are invisible. You look fine on the outside, but inside you’re struggling with a myriad of debilitating symptoms. It’s easy to feel like you’re alone, and no one understands what you’re going through.

Reading about others who have been in your shoes can validate your experience and give you tips on what to expect and how to deal with it.

You can also share your story to spread hope and increase awareness about what it’s like to live with vestibular dysfunction.

Carol A DeLillo

My journey with vestibular disturbances began in 1979 when I was diagnosed with ( Otosclerosis) in my right ear along with tinnitus, hearing loss and dizziness. I had a successful stapedectomy performed in 1980 with


Recovery from MdDs

March 11, 2021 (Not too long ago, right? Since today is July 21, 2021 [4.3 months]). Little did I know that a volunteer boat trip would change the course of my life. After an incredible


Nicole McBurnett

When I returned from deployment I was told I will never be the same person as when I left and that I needed to learn to accept the new me. I was able to accept


Part I: Vestibular Dysfunction in Children: Incidence, Diagnoses, Assessment and Intervention

Incidents of Vestibular Dysfunction in Children The vestibular system enables balance abilities and stabilization of visual images when an individual is moving his/her head. When the function of the vestibular system is disrupted, adult patients


Labyrinthitis and Vestibular Neuritis

Cause Infection or inflammation of the cochleovestibular nerve. Summary Vestibular Neuritis (or neuronitis) is a vestibular condition that is commonly caused by the inflammation of the vestibular branch of the 8th cranial nerve, which is


Mitigating Triggers from Digital Devices

Visual sensitivity from vestibular disorders can be exaggerated when a person uses a computer monitor or watches television.


Complementary & Alternative Medicine

We’ve all seen the words “complementary,” “alternative,” and “integrative,” but what do they really mean? According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, “CAM” (Complementary and Alternative Medicine) is a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not generally considered part of conventional medicine. Complementary medicine is used together with conventional medicine, and alternative medicine is used in place of conventional medicine. Integrative medicine combines conventional and CAM treatments for which there is evidence of safety and effectiveness.


Types of Vestibular Disorders

“Vestibular disorder” is an umbrella term used to encompass many different conditions that affect the inner ear and those parts of the central nervous system involved in maintaining balance.

Vestibular disorders can result from or be worsened by injuries, genetic or environmental conditions, or occur for unknown reasons. There are more than twenty-five known vestibular disorders. Each is unique, but many share common diagnostic traits, which can make it difficult for healthcare professionals to easily differentiate them.

The most commonly diagnosed vestibular disorders include benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), labyrinthitis or vestibular neuritis, Ménière’s disease, and secondary endolymphatic hydrops. Vestibular disorders also include superior semicircular canal dehiscence, acoustic neuroma, perilymph fistula, ototoxicity, enlarged vestibular aqueduct, migraine-associated vertigo, and Mal de Sébarquement. Other problems related to vestibular dysfunction include complications from aging, autoimmune disorders, and allergies.


Neuronitis Vestibular y Laberintitis

Neuronitis vestibular y laberintitis son desórdenes que resultan a causa de una infección que inflama el oído interno o los nervios que conecta el oído interno al cerebro. Esta inflamación interrumpe la transmisión de la



The use of medication in treating vestibular disorders depends on whether the vestibular system dysfunction is in an initial or acute phase (lasting up to 5 days) or chronic phase (ongoing).

During the acute phase, and when other illnesses have been ruled out, medications that may be prescribed include vestibular suppressants to reduce motion sickness or anti-emetics to reduce nausea. Vestibular suppressants include three general drug classes: anticholinergics, antihistamines, and benzodiazepines. Examples of vestibular suppressants are meclizine and dimenhydinate (antihistamine-anticholinergics) and lorazepam and diazepam (benzodiazepines).

Other medications that may be prescribed are steroids (e.g., prednisone), antiviral drugs (e.g., acyclovir), or antibiotics (e.g., amoxicillin) if a middle ear infection is present. If nausea has been severe enough to cause excessive dehydration, intravenous fluids may be given.

During the chronic phase, symptoms must be actively experienced without interference in order for the brain to adjust, a process called vestibular compensation. Any medication that makes the brain sleepy, including all vestibular suppressants, can slow down or stop the process of compensation. Therefore, they are often not appropriate for long-term use. Physicians generally find that most patients who fail to compensate are either strictly avoiding certain movements, using vestibular suppressants daily, or both.



There is increasing evidence on how sex hormones affect the inner ear. Many women report that hormonal fluctuations can trigger their vestibular symptoms. More research needs to be done to conclusively show a connection between hormonal changes and vestibular dysfunction, and until then there are few treatment options available.


Trastornos vestibulares pediátricos: Parte I

Introducción Hasta hace poco, la mayoría de los profesionales médicos suponían que los problemas de la función vestibular afectan principalmente a los adultos, y solo afectan a un pequeño número de niños. Sin embargo, existe