Causes of Vertigo

Understand the causes of VertigoCauses of vertigo could be the result of problems in the brain or in the inner ear.  Vertigo is the sensation that you or your world is spinning or moving.  Vertigo is very different from dizziness because vertigo is a description of an illusion of movement.  Vertigo has relatively few causes, but outlined below are some of the causes that can result in vertigo.

Vertigo’s most common form is called BPPV, which stands for benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.  BPPV has characteristics of the sensation of a moving environment that is caused by moving the head in certain directions or by sudden head movements.  This type of vertigo can be treated and is rarely serious.  Inflammation of the inner ear, called vestibular neuritis or labyrinthitis, can also be another cause of vertigo.  Inner ear inflammation is known to cause an acute onset of vertigo and can be associated with a loss of hearing.  The most common cause of the inner ear inflammation is either a viral or bacterial ear infection.

Meniere’s disease is a trio of symptoms such as, vertigo, ringing in the ears and hearing loss.  People with Meniere’s disease have a sudden onset of severe vertigo, hearing loss that fluctuates, and periods of time in which they are symptom free.

An acoustic neuroma is a certain type of tumor that is found on the nerve tissue in the ear that can cause vertigo.  Symptoms of the neuroma include vertigo, one-sided hearing loss with ringing in the ear.  A more severe cause of vertigo can be caused by lack of blood flow at the base of the brain.  This cerebellar hemorrhage has common symptoms of vertigo, headaches, extremely impaired walking, and the inability to look toward the side of the brain where the bleed is occurring.  This results in the eyes gazing away from the problem which may be seen as the nystagmus of the eye caused by vertigo.  Vertigo can also result from head trauma or neck injury and this sometimes will go away on its own.  For people with multiple sclerosis, vertigo is sometimes the presenting symptom and the onset is usually sudden.  Eye examination shows the inability of the eyes to move past the middle of the face to the nose.

Migraines, complications with diabetes and arteriosclerosis can also cause vertigo and lead to lowered blood pressure and blood flow to the brain.

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