Long Branch, NJ (PressExposure) April 15, 2009 -- Vertigo, for being one of the top reasons why an individual would go to a doctor, is an extremely misunderstood and frequently inappropriately treated disorder. Vertigo in and of itself manifests as a symptom, not as a true disease entity. It is often confused with dizziness, lightheadedness, presyncope, anxiety and cardiac problems. Frequently, a myriad of diagnostic imaging and other tests are utilized in a futile effort to find an appropriate diagnosis, in lieu of a diligent examination having been performed in the first place. By and large the most common cause of vertigo is due to a condition called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. However, it is important to see a properly trained doctor/therapist when seeking treatment. Most doctors are not trained at all in treating this disorder, few are trained to correctly diagnose it. This disorder is not something that will show up on an MRI examination. This disorder occurs when otoconia, (calcium particles in the inner ear), get into the vestibular labyrinthine canal systems were they do not belong. When this happens, vertigo occurs whenever there is a change in head position. Vertigo can be severe but usually subsides as soon as head movements stop. Treatment for the disorder is dependent on which canal is affected. There are 3 canals on each side, 6 in total. Treatment must be specific to the canal system afflicted. Otherwise, treatment will just continue making you more vertiginous. Making matters more complex, if the diagnosis is not positional vertigo, the treatment won't work. And if the diagnosis is positional vertigo and this specific treatment is not performed, any other treatment will not work. So as you can see, an accurate diagnosis is of critical importance in obtaining the correct treatment, otherwise success will be low. There are many causes of vertigo. As such, there is no one main treatment for it. Treatment varies pending on what is actually causing the symptom of vertigo. For individuals who suffer from vertigo, bouts are no fun. They are frequently associated with nausea and vomiting which can be severe. Vomiting can lead to electrolytes disturbances and thus other medical problems. Invariably individuals who suffer from vertigo, also suffer from dizziness and imbalance because of the natural compensation of the perpetual spinning sensation or vertigo. Without appropriate treatment this can lead to a fall which typically changes the course of ones life.
Dr. Scopelliti has over 1000 hours in post doctoral neurology, and practices at the 279 Professional Medical Arts Bldg at the rear of Monmouth Medical Center; Tel. (732) 229-5250. Information is updated weekly on the web at http://www.dcneuro.net.