Sorry for slow reply, I've been running around like crazy trying to clear my flat and putting all my stuff into storage (yes symptoms are generally good enough to do that now, hurrah!)
Identical to my experience. But we need to distinguish 'migraines' from 'vestibular attacks' because what I discovered to my disappointment 6 months after starting Amitriptyline was that it didn't help avoid the latter.
I just don't believe (and I accept this is a personal opinion), that the vertigo sensation (violent spinning) is caused by anything other than a dysfunction of the inner ear - because THAT is the organ that senses motion!
Also I understand the inner ear windows between the inner ear and middle ear are supposed to be the thinnest membranes in the body. Perhaps this is so they prevent damage to hearing - ie if the inner ear pressure goes up too high (easy, its surrounded with bone), this membrane breaks first and lowers the pressure - thus saving your hearing!! Evolution is a wonderful thing. So next time you get spinning think yourself lucky - it could be preventing hearing loss!
Unfortunately this also means they are REALLY susceptible to injury. Which to me suggest injuring them is going to be more common than many people realise.
Fluctuating tinnitus too - that is surely an issue with pressure in the inner ear. Hearing loss definitely is, unless its down to wax, an issue with the stapes, ear drum, swollen ear canal or a blocked Eustachian tube, but they are in any case ear related.
So if you have episodic vertigo, tinnitus and a feeling of ear pressure that is surely to do with the ears?! If you have all that and any impact to hearing at all, that's definitely ear trouble.
If its just dizziness and NOTHING ELSE there might be a chemical cause? E.g. when you drink alcohol. But I've never had tinnitus from drinking alcohol. And the violent spinning I've had with ear trouble has been VERY different to the spinning I've felt when woozy.
I really don't think we should, however, be blaming the brain for all these sins, its nowhere near as delicate as the ear, so far less likely to suffer injury or infection.
And if its was the brain, how come its only affecting vestibular aspects? Why wouldn't you be getting a feeling of pressure in your feet or cold hands? Sorry, just not convinced. This is surely ear trouble!
There IS however, MOST DEFINITELY central INVOLVEMENT. Because I've had episodes of ear pressure/pain and unusual tinnitus in my GOOD ear, as well as migraines, brain rumbles, brain fog, etc. etc. I suspect there is a pressure regulation process that covers both ears simultaneously and if you hurt one ear, it can cause issues with the pressure regulation of both.