In 1999 a new diagnostic term was created to describe dizziness that is due to migraines.1 This new diagnostic term is vestibular migraine and it is considered to be the second most common cause of vertigo after benign positional vertigo.2 Most people are familiar with migraines being associated with nausea, light and sound sensitivity. The reality is that a large number of people suffering with migraines also deal with dizziness. For some people this combination can be debilitating and greatly affects their activities of daily living. The episodes of dizziness can last from a few seconds to a day in duration and are typically more common in women.
Vestibular migraines should not be confused for basilar migraines as the latter are described by double vision, slurred speech, hearing changes, clumsiness, sensory changes and even loss of consciousness.3 It should also be noted that Meniere disease is a disorder of the inner ear that causes both vertigo and ringing in the ears and this may be confused with a vestibular migraine. While there is an increased risk of migraine in people with Meniere’s it leads experts to believe there is a close link.
Research is now showing the correlation between the upper cervical (neck) and symptoms related to migraines and dizziness which can benefit both patients with Meniere’s disease and vestibular migraines. Doctors who study the upper cervical spine have found that in correcting problems in the upper cervical spine, people are able to spend more days symptom free and allows patients to get their lives back.4 Dr. Justin Schallmann is one of a few doctors across the world that specializes in gently and scientifically detecting a problem in the upper neck. By correcting this problem in the neck he is seeing improvements in the way the nervous system functions therefore improving not only the migraine symptoms but also the associated dizziness.
- Salmito MC, Morganti LO, Nakao BH, Simoes JC., Duarte JA, Gananca FF. Vestibular migraine: comparative analysis between diagnostic criteria. Brazilian Journal of Otorhinolaryngology. 21 July 2015. Web. Accessed on 26 August 2015. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26277830>.
- Bisdorff A. Management of vestibular migraine. Therapeutic Advances in Neurological disorders. May 2011. Web. Accessed on 26 August 2015. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3105632/>.
- Pressman P. Vestibular Migraine. Neurology About.com. 15 Dec 2014. Web. Accessed on 26 August 2015. <http://neurology.about.com/od/Symptoms/a/Vestibular-Migraine.htm>
- Elster E. Dizziness/vertigo/vestibular disorders. Web. Accessed on 26 August 2015. <http://erinelster.com/ConditionsDetail.aspx?ConditionID=9>.
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