Vertigo is a condition that causes a person to feel themselves and their field of vision spinning. In other words, it can be described as dizziness experienced before moving. Vertigo is one of the diseases that make daily life difficult and reduces the quality of life; it can be seen alone as well as a precursor of other diseases. It is divided into two as central and peripheral vertigo. Central vertigo is examined by the Department of Neurology, and peripheral vertigo is examined by the Department of Otorhinolaryngology.
Central vertigo occurs as a result of a brain tumor, hemorrhage, aneurysm in the vessels, or different disorders of the brain vessels. After evaluating the patient’s complaints and medical history, the type of vertigo can be determined by performing a physical examination. Patients diagnosed with central vertigo are referred to the Neurology department.
Peripheral vertigo is the type of vertigo that falls under the specialty of the Department of Otolaryngology. In this type of vertigo, the patient’s distress is due to the involvement of the balance center in the inner ear or middle ear. As a result, the patient experiences loss of balance. Peripheral vertigo can also occur as a result of any distress in the musculoskeletal system, especially neck pain, or as a result of metabolic diseases such as hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, or hypoglycemia. In order to make a correct diagnosis, general metabolic tests are requested after the ear examination is done, to detect the disorders that may trigger the vertigo attack.
Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) is the most common type of vertigo. When the inner ear crystals are dislodged, the person becomes dizzy even when they are in bed, turning from right to left, or lying on their back.
Individuals with vertigo feel that they and their surroundings are spinning. Vertigo may be accompanied by symptoms such as sweating, nausea, vomiting, double, or blurred vision, difficulty in speaking, loss of balance, weakness, hearing loss, tinnitus, headache, and even loss of consciousness. Especially in case of abnormal visual disturbances, loss of balance, and loss of consciousness, you should see a doctor immediately.
Vertigo treatment varies according to the underlying cause. Antibiotics are used in case of a middle ear infection. If these inflammations don’t respond to medical treatment, surgical treatment can be preferred. If the vertigo is caused by Meniere’s disease, the patient is placed on a salt-free diet and diuretic drugs are given. BPPV usually goes away on its own within a few weeks. In rare cases, inner ear surgery may be considered if the disease does not resolve spontaneously. Patients should avoid sudden movements, get plenty of rest, and drink fluids. Physical therapy is also used in the treatment of vertigo. During the treatment period, patients are advised to stay away from tobacco, alcohol, and caffeine.
At the beginning of the diseases that cause vertigo, problems related to the inner ear, ear infections, meniere, nerve inflammation can be counted. Certain head movements are also known to trigger vertigo.
During vertigo, movements such as trying to move quickly, bending down, stretching the neck should definitely not be done.
To reduce the sensation of spinning during vertigo, you can go to a dark room and lie still. A walking stick can be used if there is a risk of falling. Trying to keep calm is so important.