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Vertigo

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Jeaniegirl posted 9/18/2019 12:30 PM

I have had two bouts with this and it's scary as hell. I had a severe case of bronchitis last winter which also included a bad ear infection. Took three weeks to get better with help of steroids. Now I've had two spells of WEIRD stuff which has happened when I bent over for something. Once to feed my barn cats so I was outside. The entire world started spinning and NO balance at all. I ended up sitting flat down outside and everything seemed to be spinning very fast around me. Even seemed like I had no control over my eyes. Then I got extremely sick to my stomach and broke out in the worst cold sweat I've ever had with sweat dripping OFF me and even my hair was soaked with sweat. It took a while to regain balance and I made it back in the house but had about 15 minutes of severe vomiting. Then it passed.

Last night the same thing happened again. I was asleep and my tiny dog had gotten off the foot of my bed to get a drink and she couldn't get back up on the bed. I got up, bent down to get her and world started spinning again. No balance but finally got myself back on the bed and it felt like bed was moving all around the room at a fast speed. It lasted about 3-5 minutes and then sick to my stomach again. I can HEAR something in my left ear. I went for my yearly full check up last week and told the doctor that sometimes it feels like a thunderstorm is going on in my left ear. All my tests came back great and he really didn't comment on my complaint about my ear noises.

I looked up symptoms of Vertigo and everything fits. It seems calcium builds up in inner ear and can 'move around' and cause the dizziness, the sweats and nausea. Not life-threatening but I suppose one could fall during these episodes and really get hurt. Treatment seems to be sort of goofy, lying on medical bed while doctors rotate the head, causing the 'rock in the head' -- hardened calcium rock -- to move to a 'safer area' in the inner ear.

Anyone else have this and if so, what kind of treatment did you have? Does having ears flushed out reach the inner ear area? It all seems so goofy but that dizziness and no balance is very scary.

Jeaniegirl posted 9/18/2019 14:57 PM

I guess I'm waiting on tushnurse to respond. She's our resident medical person.

TrustedHer posted 9/18/2019 14:58 PM

I had a couple of bouts with this about 6 years ago. Serious dizziness and nausea; I barely made it to the toilet in time. For a while, I thought I'd have to crawl there, blind.

In my case it may have been a drug interaction, or maybe it just stopped on its own. I was on 2 blood pressure drugs and using a lot of OTC athlete's foot medicine.

It stopped, so I never discussed it with my doctor. I never heard that thing about calcium.

Hope yours stops soon, too.

marchmadness posted 9/18/2019 15:02 PM

Raising my hand!!! I had a bout many years back when I was married to my ex who was a PT. He did the exact treatment you mentioned and it was like flipping a switch. I have had minor flare ups since but nothing like that time. Hope you feel better soon.

Jeaniegirl posted 9/18/2019 15:52 PM

I'm not on any type of medication at all. So it has to be the ear. I guess my main question is if an ear flush can reach the inner ear and get rid of the calcium rock. It IS very scary when everything around you is spinning at break-neck speed and it feels like the bed (or chair) is about to launch into the air.

Jeaniegirl posted 9/18/2019 15:53 PM

Marchmadness, my first thought was ....oh my god, I'm having a stroke or heart attack! I'm basically very healthy so it scared me so much. It's a WEIRD feeling for sure.

BrokenheartedUK posted 9/18/2019 16:14 PM

Ugh. This happened to me last winter. I had had a cold and then on the tail end vertigo. I wound up in urgent care because it scared the shit out of me. I thought I was having a heart attack or something!! Lol. Anyway it took a while to resolve but it was congested related not calcium. A friend also had it and she had acupuncture which she said helped. Try taking decongestants and see if it lets up. There’s a simple way they can detect if it’s inner ear at the Dr.s. You basically follow their finger until it gets to your peripheral vision when you get dizzy. Simple but not fun.

Jeaniegirl posted 9/18/2019 16:24 PM

Thank you, Brokenhearted. I think if someone hasn't had this happen, they don't know just how scary it is. After the first time I was even wondering if I had a brain tumor or something. Such severe dizziness and spinning! I want to go to the doctor but don't know what KIND of doctor I need to go to. My primary care doctor says .... it will pass but then he wasn't the one who had his head spinning around in circles and tossing up green bile like the girl in the Exorcist movie.

It's happened to me twice in three weeks so I definitely need to get something done.

barcher144 posted 9/18/2019 17:26 PM

Anyone else have this and if so, what kind of treatment did you have? Does having ears flushed out reach the inner ear area? It all seems so goofy but that dizziness and no balance is very scary.

I guess I'm waiting on tushnurse to respond. She's our resident medical person.

In before Tushnurse!

You have BVVP -- Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.

I have had it. My GF has had it. It's surprisingly common and scary as all can be until you know what it is.

My funny story... I thought that I had the stomach flu a couple of years ago at work. I stayed at work for a few hours, hoping it would calm down. It didn't, so I went home anyway. Because it was BVVP, the car ride made it MUCH worse. I literally had to stop driving and have an ambulance pick me up (I was on an interstate, and my then wife had just had surgery and couldn't drive). I went to the ER, where they gave me valium and told me to see a doctor as soon as possible.

When I got to the doctor... he literally gave me a youtube link and sent me home. The treatment is physical therapy... it's called the Hallpike Epley maneuver. You can go to an actual physical therapist, or do it yourself (with a helper! Do NOT do it alone!).

Do a youtube search on Hallpike Epley and Bob & Brad for my favorite youtube video on this.

A warning... the maneuver, when it works, will actually induce SEVERE dizziness for a moment -- one of several reasons why you need a helper.

Jeaniegirl posted 9/18/2019 17:34 PM

Thank you! I've watched that video and even it looks scary to do so I wouldn't try it alone, for sure. Since it's happened twice in three weeks, I know I need to get something done. Glad to find out a PT can help. I just cannot imagine being in a car and driving and that happen. Yikes! The first time it happened I was feeding my barn cats outside (I live in a rural area) and I had on my nightgown. I thought OMG I'm in my nightgown and going to die right here and no one will find me. That's how scary it was!

DragnHeart posted 9/18/2019 18:43 PM

I've had this happen while driving and had to pull over. Scary!!!

But mine also had numbness come with it. My tongue would go numb. The roof of my mouth. My doc believed it had something to do with my migraines since I'd get one after the dizzy or just before.

When I was younger I was walking to the front door. I ended up in the livingroom on the floor cause I had the world spinning crazy dizzy happen. My dad just looked at me and asked if I was ok. Said no. Ended up with a migraine and in hospital later that day.

I hope you get relief from this. it really is awful. Hugs.

BearlyBreathing posted 9/18/2019 21:51 PM

I had the virus that gives you vertigo. Took two weeks of basically doing very little and taking Dramamine for the nausea. Took three weeks to get normal-ish. Take care of yourself—it’s scary.

Jeaniegirl posted 9/18/2019 22:20 PM

Thank you ALL so much. I don't feel alone with this now. I have appointment to get my ears flushed out and then on to PT. I'm not stooping over and bending my head down for anything -- even if it's a $100 bill on the sidewalk!

tushnurse posted 9/19/2019 08:42 AM

Hey guys. On vacation this week so not as present

You need to be seen by your Dr. There can be MANY causes of the positional vertigo. Including Anemia (low blood counts) postural hypotension (positional low BP) and a few other things. Those other things need to be ruled out prior to diagnosing calcium build up. To answer your question about an ear flush. No it's in your inner ear not accessible from the outside.
There is however what is called Vestibular Therapy. It is very effective and resolves the issue. Usually a series of treatments and then daily exercises to keep the rock in place so to speak.

But please see your dr. Being anemic can cause the same thing and that can come from anything like extra heavy periods to silent bleeding in the gut.
Oh and the sweaty thing you felt after is from a vagal response. It's a way for your body to force blood to your brain quickly when you become dizzy, nearly pass out or even frightened.
PM me if you have other questions.

TheCaterpillar posted 9/19/2019 09:19 AM

Definitely see your doctor!

My mum has had 3 bouts of it over the last year. The first one was so severe, she got out of bed in the night feeling sick and could stand up straight. She could only describe it as she "tried to walk but everything went side ways, I didn't know which was up and when I fell I couldn't make sense of it". She crawled to the bathroom and back to bed. Her bedroom is at the top of a flight of stairs, how she didn't fall is a miracle. I was visiting at the time and my dad asked me to check on her in the morning as he didn't know what was wrong but was leaving the house. Honestly I was terrified that she'd had a stroke. She couldn't walk properly. I made her raise her arms, stick out her tongue and checked for any sagging or weakness on one side and couldn't find anything wrong. It took me almost an hour to convince her it was worthy of a doctor. I called ahead to her gp and got her an emergency appointment. A full on attack of vertigo is so terrifying.

She was medicated for the symptoms but unfortunately the pills to control the nausea and dizziness make her epilepsy pills ineffective so it sucks. Physiotherapy to realign the inner ear works on some kinds of vertigo but not all. It's no good for her but the doctor prescribed extra tablets so that next time she can take a pill as soon as it comes on. She's had it 3 times in the last 2 years. Sometimes it's just a day, other times it's lasted for 2 weeks so she's (finally) going back for more tests. The doctor thinks it's a virus that caused her vertigo. WHen she gets it bad she's incapacitated for days. It's really horrible, please see your doctor

Jeaniegirl posted 9/19/2019 11:02 AM

Thank you both for additional info. I had a full checkup four days after the first attack. Two weeks ago. Blood work, EKG, lung x-rays and got a clean bill of health. I told my GP about the attack and he sort of blew it off, saying it sounded like a bout of food poisoning since it didn't last long.

I didn't sleep much last night because if I'd try to turn over on to my left side, the bed would start spinning so I am guessing it's my left inner ear area that's the problem. I have another doctor appointment for next Tuesday.

So worrisome and so scary.

likeapinball posted 9/19/2019 13:40 PM

I had this last fall, scary! I thought it was something to do with my blood pressure.
Anyhow, my doctor ordered all kinds of blood work, ECG, etc. All normal. I ended up going to a physiotherapist, one visit and gone! My osteopath said that they treat as well, just a little differently. Good luck!

tushnurse posted 9/19/2019 18:05 PM

You can get vertigo meds over the counter. It is behind the counter but you don't need a rx Meclizine so the med.
I would also recommend adding in a decongestant and drying med like real pseudophed or mucinex.

Jeaniegirl posted 9/20/2019 11:29 AM

Thank you, tushnurse! I talked to the PT and she has lots of experience with treating this and I will be seeing her next Wednesday, after a meeting with regular doctor on Tuesday. I haven't had another episode but I think it's because I'm being extra careful about bending down or turning my head sharply to the left. At the base of my skull, left side, I have some soreness and also a numb patch of skin near my let shoulder blade. I want regular doc to check that out. I've also had mild headaches lately, something that I'm definitely not used to having.

Thanks again!

barcher144 posted 9/20/2019 17:25 PM

The nice thing about the PT exercise is that it is effective for like 90% of vertigo cases. And it doesn't hurt the other 10%... so there is little/no risk.

The first time that it hit me, I was in a Costco with my 4-year old son. I went from feeling fine to having to vomit in less than 2 seconds. Luckily, the dizziness went away after 10-15 minutes.

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