Vertigo; Here’s why you should visit your chiropractor first.
A patient visited the office today after suffering from vertigo for two weeks. She initially visited the local walk-in medical clinic who diagnosed the problem as vertigo and gave her a medication that can alleviate it. The medication seemed to allow her to sleep but did not fully resolve the problem, and she had no idea why she was feeling dizzy. Two weeks later, the dizziness on her right side is improved but her left side still is quite intolerable.
She had been a patient of ours years ago who visited for symptoms of lower back pain five years ago and after five visits, felt much better. She said that she did not have any symptoms in the neck or noticed any stiffness, but did have right knee pain at times.
Our evaluation revealed that her pelvis was very restricted with most ranges of motion other than the ability to bend forward compromised. The patient did state after digging for facts that her lower back was painful at times.
It was also noted that her left arch falls in when she stand and that her hips were distorted as well.
I explained to her that although most doctors are taught that dizziness is usually caused by the inner ear, in our office, we notice that most vertigo sufferers are usually restricted either on one or both sides and cannot move properly. This usually happens from mechanical asymmetries that begin at the feet.
Most people get used to feeling a certain way and consider it normal until it either hurts or they get a symptom such as vertigo. This is also why it is not a good idea to just tolerate discomfort without taking action.
After her visit, she felt better, and noticed an immediate reduction of her vertigo symptoms, while also noticing her ability to walk, and move her neck were markedly better after we worked on her pelvis and mid-back.
- Most diagnostic flow charts don’t consider mechanical reasons for vertigo. As a result, most patients are sent by their doctors to specialists who address their symptoms.
- Inner ear crystals have been described as a probable cause of many vertigo issues. Those who have this problem have reported relief from the Epley maneuver, which is thought to reposition those crystals and relieve the condition. What if the maneuver actually just stretches the tissues in the shoulders and neck, and does nothing to the crystals as it is thought to do. Read more about it on Wikipedia.
- Primary physicians do not consider the mechanical basis of vertigo as a possible cause, yet in most of the cases we have seen in 29 years of practice, the patient usually has one side that is moving poorly. When the patient’s patterns of movement improve, most patients markedly improve or resolve altogether.
- Spinal manipulation with myofascial release to the involved muscles surrounding the pelvis relieves many cases of vertigo by reducing torsion on the neck and the surrounding areas, improving mobility.
There is a good case for the mechanical basis of vertigo being present in most cases, yet I cannot find any studies on PubMed, a popular database of papers used by researchers and doctors alike. While it is thought to be an unconventional approach to vertigo, seeing a chiropractor first is likely to yield faster relief of your symptoms without medication and you may also save money in the process by eliminating many medications and specialist visits.