In medical terms, vertigo is a specific kind of dizziness – a sense that you, or your environment, is moving or spinning, even though there is no movement. Vertigo, then, is a specific symptom unrelated to heights that has various medical causes.
Causes of vertigo
Vertigo is the spinning form of feeling dizzy.The rotational dizziness that defines vertigo is brought on by one of two causes disturbance in either:
The balance organs of the inner ear, or p arts of the brain or sensory nerve pathways
Peripheral vertigo is a term that collects together the inner ear causes. The labyrinth of the inner ear has tiny organs that enable messages to be sent to the brain in response to gravity. By telling our brains when there is movement from the vertical position, we are able to keep our balance, maintain equilibrium.
Disturbance to this system therefore produces vertigo and can be created by inflammation, among other causes. Viral infection is behind the inflammation seen in the following two conditions:
Labyrinthitis- this is inflammation of the inner ear labyrinth and vestibular nerve (the nerve responsible for encoding the body’s motion and position)
Vestibular neuronitis- this is thought to be due to inflammation of the vestibular nerve. That consequentially causes severe Vestibular migraines.
Ménière’s disease can also be caused by inflammation, but this can be due to bacterial as well as viral infection.This form of vertigo is thought to be caused by high pressure of a fluid in a compartment of the inner ear (a swelling that is also known as endolymphatic hydrops).As well as infection, Meniere’s disease can result from metabolic and immune disorders.
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is thought to be caused by a disturbance in the eolith particles. These are the crystals of calcium carbonate within inner ear fluid that pull on sensory hair cells during movement and so stimulate the vestibular nerve to send positional information to the brain.
With the BPPV disturbance, normal movement of the endolymph fluid continues after head movement has stopped.
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, is twice as common in women, than men, usually affects older people and most often arises without a known cause (idiopathic). While most cases are spontaneous, BPPV vertigo can also follow:
A head injury
Reduced blood flow in a certain area of the brain (vertebrobasilar ischemia)
An episode of labyrinthitis
Prolonged bed rest.
Beyond peripheral vertigo brought on by benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, labyrinthitis, vestibular neuronitis or Meniere’s disease, inner ear disturbance can also be caused by drug toxicity and syphilis.Rare causes are a tear in one or both of the membranes separating the middle and inner ear, skin growth behind the eardrum1, Herpes zoster optics (a viral infection of the ear, also known as Ramsay Hunt syndrome), otosclerosis (a genetic ear bone problem that causes deafness).
Central vertigo is a term that collects together the central nervous system causes – involving a disturbance to one of the following two areas:
The parts of the brain (brainstem and cerebellum) that deal with interaction between the senses of vision and balance, or
Sensory messages to and from the thalamus part of the brain.
migraine headaches is the most common cause of central vertigo.
Uncommon causes are stroke and transient ischemic attach, cerebellar brain tumor, acoustic neuroma (a non-cancerous growth on the acoustic nerve in the brain) and multiple sclerosis. Scientists in Korea found that people with osteoporosis, a disease that lowers bone density and increases risk of fracture, are also more likely to have vertigo, a dizziness disorder caused by problems in the inner ear.
Symptoms of vertigo
Rather than being a medical condition that shows signs and symptoms, vertigo is itself a single symptom. Vertigo is simply a specific kind of dizziness, producing the sense that you, or your environment, is moving or spinning. Depending on the cause, however, other symptoms can accompany vertigo, including hearing loss, tinnitus, nausea, vomiting or a feeling of fullness in the ear.
How do we resolve Vertigo here at AcuNatural Health clinic Brisbane?
At AcuNatural Health clinic Brisbane we believe in treating Vertigos by using Chinese medicine remedies which are more efficient and less strenuous on the body than standard antibiotics. For thousands of years the Chinese have observed life processes and relationships between earth and humanity. Consequently Traditional Chinese Medicine has developed an approach to the wellbeing as a holistic consideration of health and disease and of the delicate interplay between these opposing forces.
Our practitioners will pay attention to the physiological and psychological aspects of the patient to gather all relevant information until it forms what Chinese medicine calls a “pattern of disharmony”. The patterns of disharmony provide the framework for treatment. The therapy then attempts to bring the configurations into balance, to restore harmony to the individual. The Chinese Medical practitioner gives each patient a unique herbal treatment based on his or her diagnosis as well as acupuncture is recommended to help with Vertigo symptoms.
One of our patients, June, has experienced a great improvement throughout our treatment. June has suffered from Vertigo for over 20 years, with frequent episodes every three weeks where she had to bed rest for three days; she suffered from severe Vestibular migraines as well as jaw and liver issues. She came to AcuNatural Health clinic Brisbane where our practitioner Jane was able to help Vicky with her.
Here’s June’s Testimonial about her treatments with Jane Ma:
“I have suffered from Vertigo for 20 years; the episodes have become more frequent lately resulting in me spending up to 3 days in bed every three weeks. I have had several visits to my GP who ordered a CT scan which was clear. I then saw a dentist who specialises in jaw problems, but after several visits there was still no improvement. The doctor then referred me to have Equilibrium rehabilitation for a condition of BPPV. The physiotherapist did not think I had all the classic symptoms of BPPV so referred me to a neurologist for a diagnosis. His conclusion was Vestibular migraine and prescribed medication to prevent and treat when I had an attack. In the meantime, I decided to try acupuncture with Jane, I have had 10 treatments to this point and only had one mild attach of vertigo. We are treating my liver and also my tightness in my jaw. I have seen significant improvement with my vertigo, jaw and liver. I will continue with a balancing and acupuncture treatments with Jane as this has been a chronic condition for so long it will take time to correct.
thanks June ”