All About Multiple Sclerosis

More MS news articles for June 2003

Quick, drug-free fix for vertigo

Wednesday June 25
Boston Cure Project

Anyone familiar with the discomfort of vertigo may be interested in reading this article from the journal Multiple Sclerosis. (The lead author, Elliot Frohman, happens to be a member of the Boston Cure Project scientific advisory board.)

According to this article, an estimated 20% of people with MS experience vertigo (an illusion of motion) at some point. Sometimes it is caused by lesion activity in certain sites in the brain, and therefore doctors often try to treat it with steroids or other drugs. However, vertigo in MS is most often due to the dislocation of particles in the ear canal. This type of vertigo, called benign paroxysmal positioning vertigo (BPPV), is characterized by short episodes that are brought on by changes in position. It can be diagnosed in a few minutes and treated effectively with a series of specific maneuvers aimed at moving the particles back into place. These maneuvers, which are illustrated in the article, involve things like turning the head from one side to another and moving between upright and lying down positions. Because diagnosis and treatment of BPPV is so simple, the authors recommend that anyone with MS who experiences vertigo be evaluated for BPPV before going on treatment based on other causes.

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