Is it in the family? Also thyroid issues

Well as a lot of you know, I have been suffering with MAV for over 20 years (went through all the ear tests too, which showed a few abnormalities, had diagnosises of menieres and then inner ear lesion, then vestibular migraine, basilar migraine and migraine associated vertigo.

My brother has just had a 9 hour vertigo attack, following a bad headache the day before. He has had no problem with his ears. This is his second vertigo attack, last year he had a much milder one.

Does this dispel the theory that says that where another person would get a normal migraine, we get a vertigo migraine as it is affecting something wrong with our ears?

Has anyone had any thyroid issues? I have hashimotos, but TSH is always normal. It has swung over before now but no treatment. My brother keeps having borderline thyroid after a virus attacked his thyroid (they said) years ago. He feels tired and listless.

Can actual Migraine Associated Vertigo run in families as opposed to just Migraine? Or are we both suffering from something else that is causing it?

Anyone got any ideas or answers?

Christine

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Well as a lot of you know, I have been suffering with MAV for over 20 years (went through all the ear tests too, which showed a few abnormalities, had diagnosises of menieres and then inner ear lesion, then vestibular migraine, basilar migraine and migraine associated vertigo.

I am so sorry you have had to deal with this for this long.

My brother has just had a 9 hour vertigo attack, following a bad headache the day before. He has had no problem with his ears. This is his second vertigo attack, last year he had a much milder one.

Does he have a history of migraine or not…has he had an MRI or any other test done at this point.

Does this dispel the theory that says that where another person would get a normal migraine, we get a vertigo migraine as it is affecting something wrong with our ears?

Has anyone had any thyroid issues? I have hashimotos, but TSH is always normal. It has swung over before now but no treatment. My brother keeps having borderline thyroid after a virus attacked his thyroid (they said) years ago. He feels tired and listless.

**Could that be a connection? I am not sure.
**
Can actual Migraine Associated Vertigo run in families as opposed to just Migraine? Or are we both suffering from something else that is causing it?

**I would think a history of migraine can run in families and take on any type of migraine not just a headache as my father suffers but he does not get the same symptoms as I do …
**
Anyone got any ideas or answers?

Christine

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Christine,

I was actually under the impression that many MAV sufferers have completely normal hearing tests. Everything that I have ever been tested for has been negative, which is common for MAV. I don’t see why MAV cannot run in families, as migraine does. I do not have thyroid problems, but I know that is something my docs checked for.

Hi Christine,

Don’t forget that MAV is a form of migraine – just another branch on the migraine tree as far as I’m concerned. Why it affects someone’s balance and not another migraineur’s balance is anyone’s guess but this migraine disease presumably affects different parts of the brain – and no two people are alike. Everyone’s migraine brain is a little bit different. So even though we both experience some sort of dysequilibrium or vertigo/ dizziness with this, you would display other neurological symptoms that I would not and vice versa. And migraine changes over time with new symptoms arriving and old ones leaving.

Migraine has a genetic basis and therfore runs in the family. That would explain why your brother is getting his symptoms and may also have this going on (though I hope his remains episodic and he can manage it with lifestyle alone). How old is he? Migraine seems to really get fired up in the mid 30s in most who get it.

I think having a thyroid issue is likely something that would be acting as a trigger, another health matter that you would need to keep as well-managed as possible so as not to rock the migraine boat. As Steve Rauch says, it’s important that we are as healthy as we can be to keep the lid on migraine.

Some people with MAV do record abnormal ENGs according to the literature, though I don’t think it’s common. I recall reading a percentage somewhere once. I’d also imagine that if you were having an ENG while in the midst of a migraine, that might also show an abnormal result.

Here’s something I read today that is really quite unbelievable from the journal Cephalalgia:

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Worldwide, approximately 240 million people have an estimated 1.4 billion migraine attacks each year. The effect of migraine on society has been characterized by the World Health Organization using the Global Burden of Disease scale, which includes severe migraine in the highest disability class (together with active psychosis, dementia and quadriplegia), emphasizing that this illness represents a serious health problem both for individuals and for society.

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Best … Scott

My mom has migraines with a lot of headaches, but only a little vertigo. Me, I have a lot of vertigo, but little head pain.

In my opinion, the thyroid is a major trigger. I developed hyperthyroid at the same time my MAV started. I had my thyroid treated with radioactive iodine, so now I am hypothyroid and take medication to control it. When my thyroid levels are off even a little (which they often are…I tried talking to an endocrinologist to help control it better, but he was no help whatsoever), my MAV gets so much worse. I am doing my best to get my thyroid under better control, so that hopefully my MAV will be better.

Timeless,

My brother has not had MRI done or any other tests. He has had a few mildish headaches in the past which have been cured with just paracetamol.

MAVLisa, I had ENT tests done 4 times and each one was different. The first showed canal paralesis 54% and they reckoned I had menieres that had burnt itself out.

Next one showed no abnormalities. Next one, showed inconclusive, slight loss of hearing in the high tones but not low, so not menieres after all. I had the ECOG done and had the worse vertigo attack of my life, they diagnosed menieres, but later, I was told that it could have been a migraine attack affecting the ears. More tests done in London, two letters went back to my GP, one saying the calorics showed up a problem and another saying it didnt. I couldnt complete the 2nd half due to severe vertigo. Then I read, severe vertigo in both ears means they are OK. They wanted me to go back to London to have another nasty calorics test, I declined as everything was inconclusive.
Then they sent me to Prof Goadsby London who said it was vestibular migraine. (Who knows, I definitely get full blown migraines, have done for years, flashing lights, everything. So I thought that the migraines were triggering the dizziness because of the abnormalities in the ears, but my brother has nothing wrong with his ears.

Scott, my brother is 60 and has really looked after himself. No drink, no smoking, goes for 4 mile walks, slim etc. Only problem just emerged recently is high blood pressure, and the thyroid.

Cassada, sorry to hear about your thyroid issues. Mine was always towards the overactive side but never enough to treat, then it would swing the other way. When I had an operation two years ago, afterwoulds it went overactive, they wanted to zap it like yours. I said I would wait and 3 months later it swung the other way on its own, I had to get a private test done to prove it, then the NHS tested and confirmed.

Christine

My first set of tests were inconclusive. After several meetings with specialists and too many inconclusives, I was done as well. I was told I probably had Meniere’s, which was the chronic dizziness catchall. I lived with the occasional bouts of dizziness for a long time (almost 2 decades). I didn’t have the traditional ‘migraines’. I’d get what I thought were always just ‘headaches’. Too late now to recall when my bouts of dizziness occurred in relation to my ‘headaches’. The only thing that mattered was that the dizziness was short-lived and I could go on with my life.

My June attack changed all that. I started dealing with daily photosensitivity and phonophobia which increased the dizziness,the photoshopped vision, the brain fog, the humming in the center of my head and serious fullness in my ears. I began forgetting things like my middle name, my address and my way to work. I played word-salad alot, asking my kids things like ‘did you shut the banana’ instead of ‘did you shut the door’.

Migraines come in all shapes and sizes. I realize I’m not much help here given that I do have inner ear damage which can explain my dizziness. Dizziness is a trigger for migraine, which increases my dizziness and brings out a myriad of other symptoms. Vestibular rehab therapy made it worse…and I’d find myself spending most of the next day in bed.

This is going to sound really odd, but since I’ve been dealing with this, I find that I’m increasingly fascinated by the complexity of our brains and migraines - how they affect us all differently.

I can certainly understand why somone would go into neurology or evey audiology. It’s all so very intricate. What I’d love to do is spend a day with a neuro to have him explain it all to me…in detail…in english. :smiley:

I did just that in the end. I got all my medical notes and results from the various hospitals, asked to see top man in Cambridge and asked him to explain. He looked at the ECOG they had done at Oxford, where they said I had menieres, and said, it didnt look like menieres pattern. My pressure measured right for endolymphatic hydrops which it appears I have, but he said I had an inner ear lesion. I came home just as confused. He recommended catherine cooksey exercises for the balance, which did absolutely nothing for me. I was getting the preventatives from the other hospital at the same time.

I have now given up with the ear thing, apart from I keep taking the Serc (betahistine) they gave me as I think it helps a bit.

Christine