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Current Vestibular Research

VeDA partners with the Journal of Vestibular Research and Barany Society to keep you up-to-date on the latest research in vestibular medicine.

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Medication

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.

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Chiropractic for the treatment of vestibular disorders

There are a lot of people who may think a chiropractor will automatically “snap the neck” of every patient they see, including patients suffering from dizziness. Spinal manipulation, whether performed by a chiropractor, medical doctor,

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Causes of Dizziness

Dizziness, vertigo and disequilibrium are common symptoms reported by adults during visits to their doctors. They are all symptoms that can result from a peripheral vestibular disorder (a dysfunction of the balance organs of the inner ear) or central vestibular disorder (a dysfunction of one or more parts of the central nervous system that help process balance and spatial information). Although these three symptoms can be linked by a common cause, they have different meanings, and describing them accurately can mean the difference between a successful diagnosis and one that is missed.

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Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)

Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (or BPPV) is the most common cause of vertigo, which is a false sensation of spinning.

– Benign – it is not life-threatening
– Paroxysmal – it comes in sudden, brief spells
– Positional – it gets triggered by certain head positions or movements
– Vertigo – a false sense of rotational movement

BPPV is a mechanical problem in the inner ear. It occurs when some of the calcium carbonate crystals (otoconia) that are normally embedded in gel in the utricle become dislodged and migrate into one or more of the 3 fluid-filled semicircular canals, where they are not supposed to be. When enough of these particles accumulate in one of the canals they interfere with the normal fluid movement that these canals use to sense head motion, causing the inner ear to send false signals to the brain.

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Tinnitus

Tinnitus is abnormal noise perceived in one or both ears or in the head. Tinnitus (pronounced either “TIN-uh-tus” or “tin-NY-tus”) may be intermittent, or it might appear as a constant or continuous sound. It can be experienced as a ringing, hissing, whistling, buzzing, or clicking sound and can vary in pitch from a low roar to a high squeal.

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Part III: Effective Intervention or Treatment for Vestibular Related Impairments in Children

Medical Intervention Medical intervention for damage to the vestibular system is limited to pharmacological agents or surgical intervention as warranted, and is dependent on the actual diagnosis or causal factors. Children with migraine should undergo

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Hearing Aids

Many patients with inner ear balance disorders also suffer from hearing loss. What is the connection between hearing and balance? How do hearing aids help, and what kinds of hearing aids are appropriate for people with balance-related hearing loss?

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What to Expect During an Audiological Visit

You've been experiencing dizziness, vertigo or balance problems, and you've been referred for vestibular testing. Read on to find out what to expect from your first visit to an audiologist, and what the next steps

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VeDA Ambassadors

An ambassador is an enthusiastic and dedicated vestibular patient or professional, or the family member of a vestibular patient, who is interested in sharing his or her time and expertise to help elevate awareness for vestibular disorders. As an ambassador you are passionate about our cause and committed to keeping abreast of new, relevant issues that may impact the vestibular community.

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