Neurology Consultants of Arizona

Luay Shayya, MD

Neurology & Concussion Specialist located in Scottsdale, AZ

Vertigo causes brief episodes that make you feel like the room is spinning but can be accompanied by other symptoms or can signal serious problems like a stroke. With years of experience treating vertigo, Luay Shayya, MD, at Neurology Consultants of Arizona in Scottsdale, Arizona, is the expert you need to determine the underlying cause and develop customized treatment for your vertigo. Even though vertigo is common and often goes away on its own, you should see a doctor if it recurs. To schedule an appointment, call the office or use the online booking feature.

Vertigo Q & A

What is the difference between vertigo and dizziness?

Dizziness describes a range of sensations, including:

  • Lightheadedness
  • Loss of balance
  • Sensation of floating
  • Disorientation

Vertigo is a specific type of dizziness that makes you feel like you or your surroundings are spinning.

What symptoms develop due to vertigo?

The spinning sensation caused by vertigo appears in sudden, short spells that are triggered by head movement. In addition to spinning, you may experience:

  • Headache
  • Ringing in your ears
  • Feeling disoriented
  • Involuntary eye movements
  • Loss of balance

Some patients may feel nauseated, vomit, or break out into a sweat.

What causes vertigo?

Vertigo may develop from problems affecting your ear or your central nervous system. An ear infection and Meniere’s disease, an inner ear disorder, cause vertigo, but the most common ear-related problem responsible for vertigo is benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).

BPPV occurs when small calcium crystals normally found inside your ear break off. The crystals then float in the fluid-filled tubes, semicircular canals, that help maintain your balance. As the crystals interfere with normal fluid movement, they cause vertigo.

Vertigo that begins in the central nervous system, called central vertigo, can result from an illness or injury affecting the part of your brain that controls balance. Central vertigo may be caused by:

  • Migraines
  • Concussion
  • Stroke
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Acoustic neuroma

Patients with neurodegenerative disorders like dementia and Parkinson’s disease are also more likely to have vertigo and dizziness.

When should I seek immediate medical care for vertigo?

Vertigo and dizziness may be signs of a stroke when you experience any of these symptoms at the same time:

  • Confusion or difficulty understanding speech
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Tremor in your arms or legs
  • Sudden headache or neck pain
  • Muscle weakness in your arms, legs, or face
  • Double vision
  • Inability to move one or both eyes
  • Drooping eyelid in one eye

You should seek emergency medical care if you experience any of these symptoms. Cardiovascular diseases can also cause vertigo, so seek immediate treatment if you have chest pain or shortness of breath together with vertigo.

How is vertigo treated?

Dr. Shayya first determines whether your vertigo is associated with a condition that needs immediate attention, such as a stroke, concussion, or heart problem. After completing a physical and neurological exam, and performing diagnostic tests as needed, Dr. Shayya develops a customized treatment based on the underlying cause of your vertigo.

When you’re diagnosed with BPPV, Dr. Shayya performs the Epley maneuver, which is a series of movements that stop your vertigo by repositioning the crystals.

When you experience vertigo, call Neurology Consultants of Arizona or book an appointment online.