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i am worried that my dizziness could be a serious brain disorder
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i am worried that my dizziness could be a serious brain disorder

Hey, I am wondering if you can please help set my mind at ease about my dizziness. I am worried it may be more than a vestibular problem but rather a serious (brainstem?)disorder. These symptoms have come and go over the last few years but seem to get worse every time (I have had normal MRI/CT brain scans). Please read my symptoms below.....

Pressure headache..plus..Nystagmus and severe dizziness is brought on usually by eye movements left or right. Often, my eyes "bounce" back and forth when I re-focus on the center causing severe dizziness for 5-10 seconds. Also, if I fix my stare to left or right I tend to develop a constant nystagmus--and this is especially bad if I'm laying on my back..and the bounceback effect is MUCH WORSE if I'm laying down. I do not seem to have this effect as much from looking up or down, just left or right.

At all times I feel a little off balance, but during the worst of times, I have double vision as I move my eyes Left or Right (but this corrects when I fix my vision on a point). My eye muscles feel stiff and puffy...and the muscles of my forehead feel extremely stiff and "dirty" all the time as well. It would seem when my forehead muscles loosen up my dizziness is less bad.  I also have blur vision/eye pain when tracking moving objects especially when its hectic or unexpected occurance.

I am worried about a brain disorder, but I must admit to occasional sharp ear pains and one-side hearing loss that corrects itself in a matter of a few seconds. I am really worried about this, can you please tell me if it sounds serious?I'm 33/male
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Avatar_n_tn
There are certain characterisitic ways of telling a peripheral (inner ear) vertigo/nystagmus from a central (brain) one.

If it goes away when you are completely still it is more likely to be an inner ear 'benign positional vertogo'. If it is purely horizontal (not vertical) it is more likely to be peripheral. If there is a lot of nauea it is more peripheral. If it gets better after a few seconds of holding gaze, it is more peripheral. If there are no other brainstem signs such as double vision to one side, weakness or spasticity in the arms or legs, clumisness on one side of the body etc it is more peripheral.

An otoneurologist is the best doctor to see for 'dizzy/nystagmus' problems, as with the history, exam, and some specialized testing such as videonystagmography, he can usually confirm what the problem is.

If fixed hearing loss is present also (by history or an audiogram), an MRI should be done to look for a common benign tumor called an acoustic neuroma.

Muscle tension headache can also cause nausea and dizziness due to impaired feedback from muscle sensation receptors.

Good luck
8 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
i have problems with dizzy spells and vision along with other symptoms for years my doc ordered me a mri and was found to have a chiari i malformation and a brain tumor (benign) a chiari malformation can cause alot of symptoms like dizzy spells, ear pain and ringing in the ears, brain fog, trouble swallowing, and headaches if you had a mri sometimes a chiari malformation gets over looked you might want to talk to your doctor just to be sure. I hope this helps
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Avatar_m_tn
The chance that a 33 yo person would have a serious brainstem disorder is very slim.  Your normal MRI's virtually rule out MS or brain tumors. I am no stranger to dizzy spells, having vertigo attacks, dizzy spells for over 20 years...they only dx I have now is bilateral vestibular loss. I had a whole battery of tests, including MRA, MRI's ENG's, evoked potentials, etc.  So being there, done that, I think the best course of action for you is to see a dizzyness specialist. They are oto-neurologists and you can find one affiliated with a major hospital.  You will need an audiogram, an ENG and maybe other tests such as a VEMP test. It's possible you have a form of Menierre's or damage to your vestibular system caused by a virus, an antibiotic or some other cause - sometimes these causes are unknown. There is also a possibility you could have BPPV and simple "Epley" exercises could be a great help for this condition. Good luck and hope you feel better.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been having alot of pressure in the brain area,foggy feeling,also pressure in the lower back of head also tingling it makes me question about a brain dissorder to.I've had alot of pain in neck,shoulders,shoulder blades,and.I was wondering the sensations you are having in your head that's got you questioning brain disorder is,if you have neck pain or discomfort.I haven't been fixed in my health yet,but.I wonder if my symtoms (symptoms) are coming from neck problems.I have alot more symtoms (symptoms) then this,but trying to keep this short for you hopeing to see if neck problems can be related just an idea.
Hope you feel better soon!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
A year ago, I felt dizzy and couldn't maitain my balance. My doctor recommnended a colored MRI. I had two clolored MRI's about a year ago and they turned out negative. Recently, about a couple of weeks ago, I started having the same symptoms, only this time, they are more dramatic. The symptoms only manifest during movemnet(i.e. walking), not when I am sitting or lying down. Lately I had a thorough exam. My doctor recommneded that I see a neurologist. Again, I feel like my ears are stuffed with cotton. When I walk, I feel like I am losing my balance and sense the urgency to sit down. I am sheduling an appointment with a neurologist. I am not sure wher this would lead me to. Any suggestions or sharing of symptoms are welcome. Thank you!

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Avatar_n_tn
I have similar problems when I stand up, I get dizzy, sometimes passing out or blacking out.  I notice it also happens with eye movements and turning my head too quickly.  After it became a serious problem, I went to Hopkins and had a tilt table test done.  In this test they straped me to a table.  My Blood Pressure was constantly measured while I was tilted to different angles.  It was a bizzare experience, but they told me I had something called neurally mediated hypotension.  This means that when I stand up, sit up, tilt my head, etc.  there is a drop in my BP.  I was told to eat a lot of salt or take salt pills, drink a lot of water--they explained it as the full glass effect, the BP will be more stable if the body retains more fluids.  Besides some meds (that I didn't take anyway), the other suggestion was to cut all dairy products from my diet, including small ammounts of whey, casien, and other food additives.  I was informed that even carmel color sometimes contains milk derivitives. They mentioned something also about how eating milk and meat products together was a bad thing too, but I don't eat meat so they skipped that part.  It's a suggestion, I hope things work out for you.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am worried. About 17 years ago, I had a stroke. I was in my 30s. I had right sided weakness that lasted for approximately a month. The Mri showed left sided brain lesions. I went to see a physician at UCI medical center, who told me that it could be MS, and wanted me to have a cerebral angiogram. I was young with four children and decided to ignore it. Now, at age 52, for the last year, I have been experiencing extreme dizzy spells, only when I lay down. I can lay on my left side, but if I roll over onto my back or on my right side, I get so dizzy, it wakes me up. This has been getting progressively worse. Over the last couple of months, I have been experiencing numbness in patches of my body and some saddle anesthesia now and then.  I have absolutely no sex drive, and have not had an orgasm for over 10 years. I also have extreme back pain in the upper thoracic, and mid lumbar region, which may not have anything to do with what is going on. Also, my vision is so bad now. I can't see very well close up, and sometimes have to blink to clear my vision. I also see floaters and bright lights shooting in my visual field. Sometimes when I blink, my right eye opens slower than the left.  I often have a little clumsiness, but not too bad.  This is all becoming very disturbing to me, but I am afraid to go to the doctor. I am thinking maybe its just sinuses?? Maybe I'm hoping its just sinuses. Could someone please tell me what this could be?
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Avatar_n_tn
GO  SEE  A  CHIROPRACTOR
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