As of late Vertigo has been a hot topic making headlines in many publications, even the New York Times. Much of the press has little to do with the condition but more the profitability of a new branch for pharmacology.
What it is:
Vertigo is the technical term and diagnosis for dizziness. It is closely related to tinnitus and Meniere’s disease, all of which are very similar in their presentation and symptoms. Here are the important things to know:
- Vertigo happens in 5-10% of people and jumps to 40% if older than 40.1
- Vertigo accounts for 2.5% of all emergency room visits from 1995-2004.2
- The most common form of Vertigo is known as Benign Paroxysomal Positional Vertigo/BPPV and accounts for 81-90% of all cases.3
Vertigo is difficult to properly diagnose and treat as there is no exact known cause.
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What to do:
Treatments for vertigo vary from dietary changes, inner ear injections, drugs, and even invasive surgery. Recently the New York Times recently reported on the expanding market for new drugs for vertigo.4 The article reported that there is a large need in this realm of medicine. It is safe to assume there is a large need due to the ineffectiveness of current available treatments.
Researchers in Germany found that in a group of 31 patients with vertigo, 20 had misalignments at the C1/Atlas or C2/Axis vertebra in the upper neck.5 It was determined that properly examining the upper cervical spine was very important to properly diagnose the factors in vertigo.
There is a specially trained group of chiropractors that specialize in this part of the body. Upper Cervical Chiropractors use specialized tools and testing to determine the presence of a misalignment/vertebral subluxation in the upper neck. Once the presence of the misalignment/vertebral subluxation is confirmed, specialized x-rays are taken for a specific adjustment. A precise adjustment is given only when needed to return the proper alignment of the upper neck which can help restore balance and equilibrium.
1. Friedman M, Hamid MA, Samy HM.. Dizziness, Vertigo, and Imbalance. http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/2149881-overview (accessed 2 February 2015).
2. Kerber KA, Meurer WJ, West BT, Fendrick AM. Dizziness presentations in U.S. emergency departments, 1995-2004. Acad Emerg Med. Aug 2008;15(8):744-50.
3. Fife TD, Iverson DJ, Lempert T, Furman JM, Baloh RW, Tusa RJ, Hain TC, Herdman S, Morrow MJ, Gronseth GS. Practice parameter: therapies for benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (an evidence-based review): report of the Quality Standards Subcommittee of the American Academy of Neurology. Neurol. 2008;70:2067–2074.
4. Pollack A. From Vertigo to Tinnitus, ear ailments are the new focus for drugs’, The New York Times. 9 Jan 2015. 5. Galm R, Rittmeister M, Schmitt E. Vertigo in patients with cervical spine dysfunction. Eur Spine J 1998;7:55–58.
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Dr. Craig Lapenski and Dr. Martha Schenk of Advanced Spinal Care, in Graham, Washington are your Graham NUCCA Specialists trained by the National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association (NUCCA). Their upper cervical clinic also serves Puyallup, Tacoma, Olympia, and Sumner. They are uniquely trained to correct problems in the upper cervical spine (upper neck). This vital area is intimately connected to the central nervous system and problems in this area have been shown to be an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems, including migraines and other headaches, fibromyalgia, vertigo, neck and back pain, and more. More information can be found on our website at http://www.nuccawashington.com/