Cervical vertigo is a phenomenon, often described as a ‘spinning’ sensation, caused by a dysfunction of the inner ear. It can occur when the neck is moved in certain directions, or when certain head and neck muscles are tensed. In some cases, people may experience dizziness, lightheadedness, or unsteadiness. Cervical vertigo is also known as cervicogenic dizziness, and is associated with neck pain, neck dysfunction, and migraine.
What Causes Cervical Vertigo?
There are several possible causes of cervical vertigo, however the exact cause is often unknown. Some of the most common causes include: neck injuries, such as whiplash or a concussion; neck trauma, such as a car accident; neck arthritis; vertebral disc herniation; cervical spondylosis; cervical instability; and cervical stenosis. It is also possible that cervical vertigo is caused by an underlying medical condition, such as multiple sclerosis or a brain tumor.
What Are the Symptoms of Cervical Vertigo?
The most common symptom of cervical vertigo is a sensation of spinning, often accompanied by nausea and vomiting. Other symptoms can include lightheadedness, unsteadiness, blurred vision, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may experience dizziness when they move their head in certain directions, or when certain head and neck muscles are tensed.
How Is Cervical Vertigo Diagnosed?
In order to diagnose cervical vertigo, your doctor will first take a detailed medical history and ask questions about your symptoms. They will also perform a physical examination to look for signs of neck pain, neck dysfunction, and migraine. Your doctor may also order imaging tests, such as an MRI or CT scan, in order to get a better look at your neck and spine. They may also order blood tests or a lumbar puncture in order to rule out other causes of dizziness.
How Is Cervical Vertigo Treated?
The treatment for cervical vertigo depends on the underlying cause. In some cases, physical therapy may be recommended in order to help strengthen the neck muscles and reduce neck pain. Other treatments may include medications to reduce dizziness and nausea, vestibular rehabilitation to help with balance and coordination, and relaxation techniques to help reduce stress. In cases where the cause is an underlying medical condition, such as multiple sclerosis or a brain tumor, treatment will focus on managing the condition.
What Are the Complications of Cervical Vertigo?
The most common complication of cervical vertigo is a decreased quality of life due to the dizziness, nausea, and unsteadiness that can accompany the condition. Other potential complications include an increased risk of falls and injuries, difficulty concentrating, and difficulty performing daily activities. In rare cases, cervical vertigo may be a sign of a more serious underlying medical condition, such as a brain tumor.
How Can Cervical Vertigo Be Prevented?
In most cases, cervical vertigo cannot be prevented. However, it is important to seek medical attention if you experience any of the symptoms of cervical vertigo, such as dizziness, nausea, or unsteadiness. Additionally, it is important to take measures to prevent neck injuries and trauma, such as wearing a seatbelt when driving and avoiding activities that involve strenuous neck movements.
Cervical vertigo is a phenomenon, often described as a ‘spinning’ sensation, caused by a dysfunction of the inner ear. It can occur when the neck is moved in certain directions, or when certain head and neck muscles are tensed. The exact cause of cervical vertigo is often unknown, however the most common causes include neck injuries, neck trauma, neck arthritis, and underlying medical conditions. Treatment for cervical vertigo depends on the underlying cause, and may include physical therapy, medication, vestibular rehabilitation, and relaxation techniques. It is important to seek medical attention if you experience any of the symptoms of cervical vertigo, and to take measures to prevent neck injuries and trauma.
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