What is vertigo and the Causes of vertigo?

Vertigo comes on suddenly and is a very annoying and disabling feeling. It is not simple dizziness. Everything around you begins to sway abruptly. Alterations of the ear, blood pressure, or some drug can be the causes. 


Vertigo is the unreal sensation of displacement of objects around us, as if the environment was spinning around us rapidly.


The environment is rotating and moving at high speed produces a sensation similar to that of falling into the void. Although not always, this may be accompanied by other symptoms:

  • Abnormal, jerky, involuntary movement of the eyes, known as nystagmus.
  • Decreased hearing, called hearing loss.
  • Balance disturbances.
  • Loss of strength and feeling of weakness throughout the body.

Any symptom that appears together with vertigo should be discussed with the doctor, as it will help diagnose the cause that causes it.


Frequently, the origin of vertigo is usually in alterations in the ear. But he is not always responsible. It can also appear due to:

  • A blow to the head,
  • a tumor,
  • a stroke,
  • by taking certain medications, such as antibiotics,
  • or even by variations in blood pressure.

Some vertigo, especially those caused by the ear, occurs sporadically but can be disabling. Sometimes they only manifest when the patient lies on his side when he shakes his head sharply or bends over. It is called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) and is due to fluid displacement in the ear canal. 

On other occasions, the episode is not predictable and can greatly condition the affected person’s life since they do not know when it can happen. It can happen both at rest and in motion, which is a big problem.

When vertigo occurs constantly or frequently, the specialist usually suspects a problem other than the ear.


The doctor will perform physical examinations on the patient to find the cause of vertigo. Once diagnosed, vertigo will usually go away by treating the underlying disease or problem.  

However, while it is not solved, it is convenient to know how to act during an episode of vertigo:

  • The first thing to do is sit or lie down since standing is very dangerous due to the risk of falls.
  • Then you must fix your gaze on a specific point or on an object that is not moving.

With these two measures, the symptoms usually subside after a while. But in severe or frequent cases, the doctor may prescribe antivertiginous drugs, such as betahistine or sulpiride, to relieve symptoms while the cause that causes them has not been solved.

In the case of positional vertigo, going to physiotherapy can be beneficial, as it helps restore balance to the body.

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