Residual Effects of Vestibular Neuritis for Years with No Treatment - Please Help

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(Apologizing in advanced for this long post)

I want to start by saying that i've had ear problems and conseuqent intermittent vertigo spells since I was a young child. But this particular problem began in Nov. 2014 when I came home from school feeling slighly dizzy. I went to lay down for most of the evening not thinking it anything more than just mild dizzyness. Later that night around 10pm I took the dog for a walk and about half way around the block I could tell something wasn't right and I wanted nothing more than to just get home before a spell hit.

I didn't make it.. 

Suddenly a spell came over me and I had to lay down in the street hoping for it to pass. I believe I started yelling help bc it wasn't letting up and a very nice neighbour came out and stayed with me until someone came to get me. I got home eventually but the dizzyness didn't cease and for the rest of the night until I fell asleep I alternated between vertigo spells and throwing up. The next day I felt extremely weak and dizzy but I have not had a real true spell since that night (I'm scared writing this will jinx it). I have however, dealt with feeling unsteady and easily dizzy by what should be innocuous every day things. I went to the doctor a few days after this happened and he didn't actually do anything. No diagnosis, no treatment, just said that it should subside on it's own soon enough. Safe to say it didn't.. So I headed back to the doctor this time to see a nurse practioner and she ran blood tests and saw that my iron was very low so she prescribed me Feramax. It seemed to cure my dizzyness from approx. May-Nov 2015 at which time I had stopped taking it for the most part as I didn't want to take excess iron if I didn't need it anymore. 

When the slight dizzyness and unsteadiness returned I thought I must just have low iron again and began taking feramax again and went back to the nurse practioner. She ran another blood test and saw low iron again and suggested that I keep taking them in addtion to vitamin B. It was this visit that I requested to see an ENT specialist since I wasn't getting any real help it seemed. She wanted me to continue w/ the iron before calling in a specialist.

Fastforward to May 2016, I haven't gone back to the dr, my dizzyness is still present (but no full-on spells thankfull since the initial one, though many close calls) and I don't really know where to go from here. This has greatly impacted my life, and I'm reluctant to go back to the same dr/nurse practitioner if they're going to downplay it and put me on vitamin supplements yet again. 

What can I do?

Not sure if it is relevant, but I'm a 20 yr old female and was 19 when this happened. I know this occurs primarily in older people and perhaps that's why my drs didn't want to diagnose it?


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7 Replies

  • Posted

    Im sosory about what is happening to you, i really hope you doing better, Have you tried vertigo meds?

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  • Posted

    Did you experience any ringing in your ears or fullness or hearing loss during your attack? If so, it may be Menieres or another condition, and an ENT consult is advisable. Another condition causing vertigo i benign positional vertigo. It can present in different ways, and an ENT can fix this usually.

    Also, believe it or not, migraine can present this way. It's called MAV, or migraine associated vertigo. It's more common in someone who has a personal or family history of migraine. Sometimes there is sensitivity to light or sound, and fluorescent light, foods, weather and hormones can trigger it. And it doesn't even need to involve a headache! A neurologist familiar with MAV is the best person to treat this if these factors fit with your episode, and preventative meds such as verapamil or effexor are sometimes given.

    The iron sounds like it worked, but may be coincidence.

    Violent dizzy vertigo attacks can also be an inner ear infection that goes away with time, but you are saying that months later it is back again, so it doesn't fit the typical presentation.

    I do think an ent referral is reasonable if this continues. At very least, they can give you appropriate anti dizziness medications, and hopefully give you a correct diagnosis.

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  • Posted

    I am concerned by your long history from childhood.  Clearly an ENT or neutological consult is essential.

    Eleftherios S. Papathanasiou, PhD, FEAN

    Clinical Neurophysiologist

    Fellow of the European Academy of Neurology

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    • Posted

      I should've written that my dr. said it could be BPPV when I would wake up out of a dream with vertigo but only roughly demonstrated the epley maneouver as treatment. Back then however, I would have a spell then go back to sleep and be fine for the rest of the day, this feels more chronic so I think I'll definitely request an ENT referral!

      Thank you! 

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  • Posted

    Yes Taylor "vertigo" which I believe is what you have doesn't usually start till bone loss or an accident causing bone loss,ear aches and things of that nature.

    There is therapy for what you're going through. Ask your Md. 

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