The Vestibular Migraine Community

Anyone diagnosed with Vetibular Migraine after a head injury?


#1

Hi I have post concussion syndrome and have been diagnosed with vestibular migraines. I have been holding off taking Nortriptyline as was worried it may effect my healing. Anyone else out there suffer a similar thing?


#2

Nasty. Poor you. I’m sure I got mine from minor trauma. In my case I pointed a not particularly powerful shower into my ear. Didn’t do anything to the drum but apparently upset the inner ear. Freak accident. Shows how bizarrely easy it is to upset the inner ear.

After 1.5 years of mostly chronic dizziness and a number of vertigo attacks I started to get better about a month ago. Still on amitriptyline (very like nori) and cannot recommend the med more.

Be patient. You may have just upset the fluids in your ear and it will just take time to stabilise. I’ve heard divers get similar injuries.

I can literally tell how bad my inner ear fluid is as for all this time I’ve heard strange bubbling in my ear that has decreased over time, and with it the symptoms have decreased.

The only thing left now is the tinnitus and hearing distortion during loud sounds. I hope that will decrease now too.


#3

Hi Lucy,

Yes I suffered a concussion in September was diagnosed with post-concussion syndrome for 5 months until I saw a otoneurologist was tested and then diagnosed with vestibular migraines. I have been on topamax for last 3 months now and just started nortriptyline to help with sleep. I am feeling a lot better and am working full time again. I hope you started the nortriptyline and are doing better now!

Did you have episodic migraines prior to your concussion? I did and I have extreme motion sensitivity. Your migraines can manifest over time and the concussion just exacerbated that process. I hope you are on the mend!


#4

I had the head injury just a month before my flight and started the symptoms right after the flight. Very familiar. Here Is my story and how I diagnosed myself. I originally started with neck and shoulder pain. I then suffered vertigo, disequillibrium, & oscillopsia (images jump)for over 20 yrs intermittently and 24/7 last 4 years. I was 39yrs old when I had the first attack. It took me 24 year’s to figure out that sounds created my symptoms. I have been through many experts in Canada and USA for a diagnosis and most of the experts couldn’t get to a diagnosis. Some of them even prescribed me antidepressants. They tried every antihistamines, neuroleptics and many other drugs to help me. All these just only ruined my liver and kidney. I had every diagnostic text in an ENT book other than exploratory surgery. Being a master’s prepared nurse I refused to accept that diagnosis. I lost my nursing license as I couldn’t go back to work. I then started keeping a very descriptive diary, hour to hour and figured out that it was always certain activities that is producing my symptoms. As a last resort, after a lot of research I started using Silicone ear plugs fo a week (remember it is important to plug only one ear 24/7 at a time for a week so that you can hear and at the same time figure out the problem ear) and I realized that it is low frequency sounds that was giving me the symptoms. Any motorized sounds produced the symptoms, even the sound of a running water, meals (especially the food that makes the sound when you chew, exhaust fans, AC/heater, cars, TV, music etc. I was told I have a supersonic hearing and I was so loud. Hope all of you can give it a try with Silicone plugs and see if it makes any difference. This problem is called Tulio phenomenon. It is caused by either SSCD, perilymph fistula or from a thin bone beside the ear. If it is SSCD you can patch it. For other situations, we don’t have much options other than avoiding the sound entry into that ear. If we do surgery we lose 30 to 40 % of our hearing in that ear. We can have custom made ear silicone ear plugs which causes only 30 to 40 % of hearing loss. If you plan to use it, just only seal the entrance of that ear you plan to block. Please don’t push it into the ear drum. Make sure you air the ear when you are not exposed to the sound (I mean pindrop silence). Now, I only get the symptoms if I am exposed to sounds and I forgot to wear my custom made silicone ear plug. Now I watch TV, drive and is able to go back to my normal routine. Please remember, this is not a medical advice. These suggestions are only for people who had proper testing and treatments before trying this out and only if your treatment is not working. Could you all please let me know through my email (please write “VERTIGO” in subject line so that it doesn’t end up in trash/spam)below if the Silicone plug worked for you as I would like to join a neurotology group to further the research on Vertigo/disequillibrium and ocillopsia. If you have any questions, you can email me at gracymathew.kalath@gmail.com. There are too many of you struggling with this illness on Facebook and I can’t keep up with the Facebook comments. So please email me if you have any questions. If you get my story more than once that doesn’t mean I am trying to sell Silicone plug or send you spam. I trying to help as many vertigo sufferers as I can as I can’t keep up with the names. Good luck!

Thank you
Sincerely,
Gracy


#5

i had a fall skiing which happened at the start of the year, and i am not sure but suspect it has had something to do with my migraine balance disorder as i had a mini (silent) migraine immediately after i fell (like 2 minutes after) which lasted about 20 minutes. since then i got more and more migrainous symptoms which really got awful after i had a stomach infection. yep, great year i’m having.

I may get an upright neck MRI just to rule out any foul play in the vertebrae there… although i don’t think there is, i can’t be 100% sure this didn’t kick it off.


#6

PLFs are well known to give you a migraine - imagine this is because leaking fluid stimulates the motion sense when its not supposed to be stimulated and alters all movement signals on the affected side so brain gets upset. Did you hit your head?


#7

didn’t hit my head, but i bust my knee and hit the ground hard with my rear end (yeah it looked pretty cool) and the shock probably went nicely up my spine.

i don’t think i have ear trouble, as it has always seemed neurological to me and no hearing loss etc. and has always been equally bilateral or central and all ear tests have been equal and normal on both sides - so probably unlikely to be something on one side. and the chances of having the same thing on both sides is low.


#8

Agree with that, although in a recent paper, bilateral fistulae were shown to exist, but yeah, would seem to have to be some kind of really freak event for that to occur!!


#9

BTW David Bucholz in his Headache book has some useful stuff to say about trauma causing migraine.

my most consistent symptom has been photophobia, whereas the dizziness has always been variable - so i am comfortable that migraine is the culprit, even if i haven’t yet figured out how to beat it.

maybe the migraine fairy will come tonight and take it away.


#10

Be careful with causality.

Sure, trauma can cause migraine, but that’s probably due to an injury - most likely sensory because that’s how migraines are thought to start - its a brain spasm caused by stress from unexpected sensory signals. I will try to find a recent paper on this I was reading. /edit here it is:

I was diagnosed with a fistula after trauma and weirdly although it caused me severe imbalance for 5 weeks I didn’t get a single migraine. It was only when the vestibular symptoms returned 5 months later I began to get migraine wobbles. Must be something to do with secondary hydrops and how that confuses the brain. It also might be because I was 5 months older - the older you are the more likely you will get a migraine from an ear injury, apparently.

Here’s a reasonably famous sufferer of Hydrops. He did not hit his head but instead it is thought a whiplash injury from a bad landing caused it:


#11

thanks - interesting articles…