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Nystagmus and Chiari
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Nystagmus and Chiari

Hi,

I have chiari and I've been getting nystagmus all the time lately (the nystagmus has only started this last year). I know that sometimes nystagmus can be a symptom of chiari but I've read that it's usually an up and down eye movement when it is a symptom of chiari. When my eyes shake they always shake side-to-side. Well, I think they shake side-to-side because everything looks like it is moving from side to side, the world looks like it is shaking from side-to-side from my view-point when it happens.

So, I am wondering, does that mean that in my case the nystagmus is probably not connected to my chiari? Should I be worried that the nystagmus might be caused by something else since it is not the normal type of nystagmus? I've just sort of been assuming it was caused by the chiari but is that even possible if it is not the right kind of nystagmus?

Does anyone else's eyes shake side-to-side and not up-and-down?

Also, I guess I have what would be called "positional nystagmus" and also "gaze Induced nystagmus"... since it usually only happens if I am sitting or lying down with my neck bent so that my head is on an "right angle" from my body (like an L shape) so "positional nystagmus" OR if I am reading something on my laptop "gaze Induced nystagmus". Actually, I will always get nystagmus if my neck is bent on a right angle (like an L shape) for more than a few minutes. Are these two trigger factors ever normal for chiari-related nystagmus? Does anyone else experience these triggers too?

Thank you! :)
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8 Comments Post a Comment
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999891_tn?1407279676
Hi,
Have you had a VNG test?
Do you suffer vertigo?
Downbeat nystagmus is normally associated with Chiari but there are many conditions that cause it.

Ray
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620923_tn?1413427272
Hi Marileew,

I had the same type of the side to side movement.....and I did not get it often.

Do u have a chiari dr?

U may want to discuss this with him/her and I do hope u r keeping a journal, this will help to remember all that is going on plus the length of episodes and how often they occur.

As Ray mentioned, the typical  nystagmus is normally a downbeat of the eyes, but u really need to get to a chiari dr to see what else this may be attributed to.

I did not report mine since it did not "fit" the typical findings and was scheduled for surgery.

Please keep us posted
"selma"
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Avatar_f_tn
I had nystagmus that was side to side too, I think they called it jerk nystagmus, I couldn't look to the right without my eyes jerking back to the center.  It made me really motion sick because I couldn't take in any peripheral information visually, it was all blurry.  I don't know if it was the Chiari's causing this or the problem I had with a disc in my neck, but I don't have it anymore.  I had also been taking Topamax, which can cause Nystagmus.  If you are on any seizure medication, you might want to check to see if nystagmus is one of the possible side effects.

Tina
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768044_tn?1294227036
Tina - Oh! I also take Topamax! Maybe it is due to the Topamax. Thank you for suggesting that! I will ask my doctor about that.

Ray -  I have never had a VNG test, I should ask my doctor to order that test? I'll do that next time I see the doctor.

selma - I hadn't thought to keep a journal. I keep a migraine journal for my migraines, but I don't keep a journal for symptoms like nystagmus or any other neurological symptoms like that. that's a good idea. i should do that, that way it would be easier when talking to my doctor about it. thanks!
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371999_tn?1250021541
hi there!

i dunno if it's necessarily related, but my vision has been jumpy/shaky CONSTANTLY for the past 2 1/2 years.  i don't have nystagmus though.  this is where it came up with the MRI's and the possibility of chiari or pseudotumor cerebri.  i think something has to be going on in there to be causing it--at least in my case.  so i'm not surprised some is related to chiari, but i know it's definitely associated with vestibular disorders and that junk.

i hope you find some relief!
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Avatar_f_tn
I recently had an MRI and a mild Chiari malformation was found. I work among Dr.'s and unfortunately, I have just enough medical knowledge to make me obsessively curious about my own medical issues. Haha So, I have been researching a lot about Chiari and unrelatedly had been curious about the nystagmus, just like yours with shaking side to side, I've had my whole life. It wasn't until today that I began to wonder if the two were related. Then I found your post here. In spite of the advances in the understanding of Chiari Malformation, it seems there is still a long road ahead. There is a lot of debate in the medical world over what is caused by Chiari and what isn't. I'm going to make an educated guess and say that this "gaze induced" nystagmus may just be a variation of the Chiari symptom that is experienced by some and not others. If that makes any sense.
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5640779_tn?1375816966
Hello
My daughter who has Chiari has it side to side. I also have Chiari and do not. I do have a strabizma however....
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620923_tn?1413427272

  Hi and welcome  to the Chiari forum.

Many of the Chiari specialists do agree that nystagmus is a Chiari symptom....it is the uninformed Drs that do not feel Chiari gives us ne symptoms let alone  our eyes down beating...these same Drs also do not feel ne medical intervention is required.,...

Find a true Chiari specialist to help guide u and get u tested for ALL related conditions.
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