Looking left or right shocks my upper body, I lose my balance, face goes numb, and almost pass out

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I've had this problem for almost a decade now and it comes and goes.  When it comes, it is usually present for a month or more and it has never been gone for more than a month - this time it's particularly bad.

Problem: I look far left or far right and my whole upper body (sometimes to my feet, but usually just shoulders and higher) get an electric vibrating feeling similar to a very low voltage shock.  When this happens, it causes my brain to feel heavily shocked, especially the sides of my head, and my lips and facial tissue around my lips go numb.  When it's bad enough, I feel nauseous...  I suddenly feel like I have no idea which way is up - very dizzy - and have a system wide panic attack very briefly as my body tries to recover.  The symptoms last only 5-10 seconds after the major shock dissipates.  

If I keep my eyes forward all the time, I'm not dizzy at all (say watching TV or such).  If I close my eyes I can whip my head around like a crazy person and I'm not dizzy one bit.  It is ALL in my eyes.  If I look around without turning my head I get small dizzy sensations, and if I push my eyes all the way to the far left or right, I get shocked (and all the rest of the symptoms above!)

Over the years I have gone to two different ENTs, one neurologist, three family doctors (after having switched doctors three times) and no one has found a solution.  At one point the dizziness got so severe I couldn't walk down the bedroom hallway without support from my wife.  That lasted almost six months.  I lost my job, and surprisingly about 50 pounds!  

At that point I think the symptoms started to subside again, and at the same time they did a tilt table test and found my blood pressure was very low - so they gave me some meds to increase my blood pressure.  It MIGHT have been those pills, or it may have just been time for the symptoms to take a break - either way I got better and stopped taking the meds and I was still fine.  But "the cat came back" of course, as it always does.

Does anyone know what might be causing this?

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  • Posted

    I was going to suggest your neck or body might be out of alignment..If i chake my head with reading glasses on, i experience some dizziness..but not if my eyes are closed..and i have cervical injury.I've tried the following and all worked for me.. Chiropractic adjustments, saline nasal rinses..exercises for vertigo-(Dr. Carol Foster). I also began to take liquid B vitamins, and Vit D

    (lots of it)  for dizziness as was told to me by a renter.  I'm sorry you're having such a long bout with this aggravation..hope maybe some of this helps. Let us know. Prayers.


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  • Posted

    Hi I agree with fast horse, but I have felt for a long time my eyes are the problem, however after seeing Optahmalogist at Moorfields  Eye hospital,in London, and other tests by a Neuro- Otologist it seems my eyes are fine in the selves. But how it has been explained to me by a Neuro,Otologist at the Hospital for Nuerology in London , it is because  our eyes are having to compensate for our balance that is not working correctly due to.our vestibular system,that is out of sync for whatever reason.  and this is where it gets mor complex,mbcause unless they can see on an MRI for example, damage or whatever is visible, they don,t seem to be able to diagnose the cause.  I have had it (daily) for nearly 5  years this October, and take suplemts galore to,keep myself going as you probably know it is physically exhausting.  
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  • Posted

    Hi gleep, do you get this also when you move your chin to your chest? I ask because it sounds siilar to L'Hermittes sign. If you google this it throws up MS all the time and is a common symptom of this disease but it is also common with cervical issues that cause the same symptoms but is not from MS. Google cervical myleopathy/ spondylosis/stenosis. I'm sure you know about thses but I have recently begun getting a similar thing but not from sideways movement, but up and down!  

    The dizziness/low blood pressure could be linked but that relationship is normally from standing up too quickly and passes very soon.

    I'm not sure if you have seen some of my posts but I am currently suffering a numb face, tingling lips/tip of tongue, muscle twitching, pins and needles in the hands and that neck flex signal in the small of my back and legs....the dizziness has almost passed, but I suspect doing all the neck exercises for my labrynthitis may have aggravated a cervical spine issue highlighted on my MRI's - though the neuro didnt think the "wear and tear" was enough to cause problems. 

    Have you had MRI's? If not, I suspect you will find some cervical spine issues. 

    Best wishes, Chris

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  • Posted

    Don't know if this will apply to you, but try reading VasoVagal Syncope  on this site. The dropping blood pressure /fainting comes with similar symptoms. I was hospitalised several times for this issue. 


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