This type of dizziness, marked by feeling that you or your environment is moving or spinning, is brought on by a disturbance within the inner ear or brain.
Types of Vertigo
There are type types of vertigo – peripheral and central.
Central vertigo is caused by a problem in the brain, typically in the brainstem or cerebellum, which are responsible for interactions between the visual and balance systems.
The most common cause of this type of vertigo is a migraine headache. Other less common conditions that can trigger central vertigo include stroke, tumors, acoustic neuroma, multiple sclerosis, alcohol and certain drugs.
Peripheral vertigo is caused by problems in the inner ear. The vestibular system enables us to keep our balance and maintain equilibrium by sending signals to the brain about the position of the head in relation to movement.
Inflammation can cause these signals to become disrupted. This can occur because of a viral infection and is commonly associated with labyrinthitis (inflammation of the inner ear’s labyrinth and vestibular nerve) and vestibular neuronitis (inflammation of the vestibular nerve).
Additional causes of peripheral vertigo include:
- Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
- Ménière’s disease
Vertigo is technically a symptom, and not a disorder. It is chartered by the sensation that you or your room is spinning or moving. It may also be accompanied by additional symptoms such as
- Hearing loss
- Difficulty focusing or moving the eyes
- Double vision
- Feeling of fullness in the ear
Before a treatment plan can be created, your doctor must determine which type of vertigo you are experiencing. In order to do so, your doctor will give you a thorough physical examination and may order a CT scan or MRI.
While some forms of vertigo disappear without treatment, others require medication or physical therapy.
Call Audiology Center Northwest at (503) 232-1845 for more information or to schedule an appointment.