How to deal with a vestibular migraine attack

I’ve been fighting off a vestibular migraine attack for 2 weeks with flunarizine and meclizine but it’s still threatening. Does anyone have an opinion on whether I should stop taking the medicine and just let the attack happen. Does the attack help the thing pass? Or is it better to stick to the medication until it passes naturally? Any suggestions would be truly welcome.

hi and welcome. A vestibular attack can last some time. Mine regularly last more than a week. Flunarizine is a preventative designed to stop attacks from happening. They take months to take effect. Preventatives won’t stop an attack in its tracks unfortunately. Meclizine is for short-term relief, if you are lucky, and will reduce symptoms making life more bearable. So my advice is to keep taking both and be prepared to sit it out.

I would recommend you have a good read around the subject on here to fully understand your situation. Hopefully you are well enough to do that during an acute attack like you are currently experiencing. That in itself is a good sign. One quick way to get into groove might be to read some Personal Diaries. That should give you some idea of what you are suffering. You’ll find full descriptions of attacks though individuals experience does vary considerably. The Search facility also works extremely well. Site contains a wealth of information as does the Welcome and Wiki Sections.

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Thanks so much for the response. It’s really appreciated. I do need to do more research here. I think you’re right that if it’s going to attack, it will, and it make sense then to use meclizine to try to lessen the intensity.


If you’re still in the episodic stage and consider your MAV an ‘attack’ rather than ‘life’, you’re in a way better spot than you could be. Taking a preventative at this stage is an excellent long term strategy and might save you a lot of heartache and suffering down the line.

It’s time to think rescue meds for the attack. Personally, I use a range of things depending on the character and severity of the individual episode. These include Rx anti-nausea drugs, Meclizine (a mild vestibular suppressant) and Fioricet (barbiturates/Tylenol/caffeine). Triptans are useless for me and kidney issues prevent me from taking NSAIDs. Also, I avoid pain meds because rebound headache from medication overuse sucks worse than migraines. If my trigeminal nerve is involved, I add Benadryl. If I’m at wits end, I take an amitryptline. Most of these are Rx I got from my neurologist. It took trial and error of a lot of drugs to work out the mix. A couple of cheap OTC options are aspirin/willow bark, electrolytes salts and Dramamine/Bonine (which are the same thing as Meclizine).


If I am in the midst of a vestibular migraine attack I find 1mg of Ativan very helpful. It doesn’t necessarily change my pain level but allows my tense muscles to relax and causes my anxiety about the attack to lessen. There is also evidence that Benzodiazepines suppress vestibular responses and I have to agree. It calms down my dizziness and will stop rotational vertigo for me.