I have been un well now for 13 weeks which have been the worst of my life. It started with a bad head ache and the feeling you get when you have a bad cold (head is not your own). After a couple of days I felt really unstable on my feet, off balance, tired and ended up walking in diaganals. This was together with a bout of food poisoning which gave me bad diarreah. My Gp put the off balance and light headedness down to the food poisoning and told me to drink more. Two weeks later after blood, urine and stool tests which all came back clear I was that bad I visited the local hospital. The first thing that the doctor did at the hospital was to check my ears and she said that I had a bad ear infection and that my left ear was particularly bad and that the symptons would pass in a couple of weeks. Around the same time I had the feeling of fluid moving in my head when I moved it from side to side.
The symptons continued and by this time 6 weeks in my GP was at a loss and was worried and so she sent me for a CT scan of the head. I also paid privately to see an ENT specialist who has seen both a CT and MRI scan of my head, his conclusion after doing a number of tests was that I had Labrynthitis and that it would sonn pass, "Dont worry" where his words.
10 weeks in and the dont worry had worn off and so I again paid to see a neurologist who after a number of tests also concluded that I have labrynthitis and "dont worry" it will pass. The "dont worry" coupled with the we have seen it many times before does not console me much.
I have now passed the 13 week mark and I do not think that it is as bad as it was but it is still bad enough to make me feel unwell and tired all the time. I have only had the room spining a couple of times but suffer mainly from off balance and light headedness. I am concerned about how long this can continue as I had only been in my new job a couple of weeks when I was hit by this and we are expecting are second child next summer. I had three weeks off but am now back part time I think getting out the house has helped with depression (stuck in the house all day alone was making me depressed)
I must add that before this happened I was a fit 30 year old who went the gym 3/4 times a week and ate quite well. I am trying to do as much as possible even though I feel ill constantly to take my mind off it. I have friends who have had it before both who seemed to be bed bound one for 6 weeks and the other for 12 but both made a full recovery. I am due to see the ENT specialist at the end of Jan but his last words to me where that I shouldnt have to see him again.
Can anyone advise me on how long this can take to pass or anything I can do to help my recovery, I am willing to try anything. This virus has already taken 3 months of my life.
If you are not significantly improved by the time you see your specialist next, be sure to clearly tell him or her how these symptoms are affecting your life, and ask if you should be sent to vestibular rehab therapy (VRT). It's a special kind of physical therapy for people with dizziness/balance problems and can be very effective. The exercises help your brain compensate for the injury to your ear.
In the meantime, try to keep as active as you can without provoking severe symptoms. Movement provides input to your vestibular system and helps the brain find "ways around" the damage. If you can, try a little walking or any other activity you can do. Walking is great for the balance system. Use walking sticks if you need to.
I went to see a GP on 3rd september as I was feeling dizzy. I was told "this is comon at your age and to come back if I passed out! a month later I had asevere vertigo attack and was taken to hospital and was initially diagnosed with Benign Positional vertigo. After 2 weeks the vertigo stopped and then settled into a constant dizziness and light headedness. Went back to GP and was put on two different drugs which only made me feel worse. The GP told me 6 weeks maximum for Labyrnthitis and after 6 weeks and no change was perplexed as to what to do next. I stopped taking the drugs and felt better for doing so. I felt the GP had no idea what they were dealing with and as the text book said 6 weeks after that they didn't know what to do next. They did sign me off work for 4 weeks but I decided after this time it was better to try and continue some normal life rather than sit at home doing nothing.
I went to see a private vestibular therapist who has given me exercises to do and advised that i didn't sit at home but confirmed it a good idea to try and continue work if possible. It is now 3 months since the vertigo attack and the fogginess and feeling of pressure on the head continues - when i am stressed or tired it gets very much worse and I cannot concentrate or think clearly.
I rest a lot but also try to walk and work (shorter hours) each day to keep a normal life.
My frustration is how long before i get back to a normal life! It is so debilitating and hard for others to appreciate or understand.
It doesn't sound like you've had a proper diagnosis and testing yet. You should see (if you haven't already) an ENT who specializes in the inner ear (dizziness/balance and hearing). These are called neuro-otologists (also spelled neurotologists). There is a list at the Web site of the American Neurotology Society (if you are in the US); otherwise, try the Web site of the Vestibular Disorders Association (but those are incomplete lists) or ask your GP or ENT for a referral to a "bigger" specialist. Where do you live?
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