From the description, you may be suffering a common, yet only recently recognized form of migraine called migraine-associated vertigo without aura. Migraines are thought to be caused by areas of the brain being more ‘excitable and sensitive’, whereby normal senses, like noise, light, smells and motion, are perceived as being unpleasant and painful. In approximately 1/3 of people who suffer migraines, will also experience dizziness and vertigo symptoms.
As I’m unaware of the exact testing you have had performed, typically a workup will include a detailed history of lifestyle, familial and past medical factors. Careful attention to other associated complaints including tinnitus, hearing loss and photophobia/phonophobia. Examination can often include hearing tests, caloric testing, and VNG, although typically negative results are seen. Migraine-associated vertigo is often confused with Meniere’s, and can differentiated by the above history and examination findings.
Treatment for migraine-associated vertigo will firstly involve identifying and managing the potential triggers. Keeping a diary of discerning triggers is best to see correlation with symptoms. Apart from the pharmaceutical avenues typically explored by medical practitioners, I have had success using vestibular rehabilitation as a method of reducing and managing this type of migraine. This form of therapy often involves ‘resetting the motion detectors of movement’, namely coordinating movement between the body, head and eyes. Typically I would use a combination of computerized balance plate exercises, specific joint therapy, gait retraining, eye exercises, and procedures to assist the inner ear function.
Chiropractor ~ Functional Neurology
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