New to the site- So Glad to know that I am not alone

I stumbled across your forum while researching information about Vestibular Migraines, and I am so happy to have found this site. What a relief to know that I am not alone. I have had vertigo/nausea 24/7 since July 11th 2009. This is my second episode, but unlike my first, which went away after three (3) weeks this one stayed. Other symptoms include, imbalance, headaches (some severes, some dull), ringing in the ears, and sensitivity to odors, motion sensitivity, etc…

Like all of you I have done the full gamut of tests, scans, vestibular therapy… etc. You name it and I have been tested for it. Currently my Neurologist is treating it as a chemical imbalance, and as a result we are doing the trial and error form of medication dancing. We have tried Nortriptyline, Propranolol, Citalopram, and currently Depakote. A couple have helped slightly, the others made it worse. I have also tried Valium and Meclyzine with no effects.

I have read through some of the other posts and I know that I am fortunate to be able to function, go to work, drive, etc… but it still weighs heavily at the end of the day when I am sick of faking that everything is okay. I am glad that I now have a place to actually talk about how I am feeling whithout giving the standard answer of “I feel fine.” I look forward to any advice anyone has about different medications etc…and to get to know others like myself who go through this everyday.



I’m sorry that you feel so bad. Have you tried the other kinds of benzodiazapene’s such as Ativan, Klonopin or Xanax? These usually provide shor-term relief from the dizziness. Xanax is the only one that provides temporary relief for me.

Dr. Hain, a prominent neurologist who treats MAV, usually starts with Effexor (an SNRI antidepressant). I’m trying to take this now, but the side effects are pretty rought for me. But it has worked for others. I’m also on Depakote 250mg and Amitriptyline 25mg. Dr. Hain also likes Topomax (similar to Depakote) and Verapamil (I think). Several people also take supplements such as Magnesium and B2 among others for migraine.

Lots of people find the right combination of meds and lifestyle changes to help them through this. I hope you find yours soon.


Hi Sarah,
Welcome to the club! Not the most fun club to be in, but some very nice people are here.
What were some of the side effects from the meds you trialed? It sounds like you are on the right track. I’m guessing you did the migraine diet? I did it for a long time, but to no avail.
I am on Cymbalta mainly, with occasional use of Klonapin and recently added a bit of Effexor to my aresenal. I’m much better than I was, but still on the path looking for “normal”, if I can
find my way back there.
Please keep us posted!

Hi Sarah,

Welcome to mvertigo. You’re right … this is the place to be if you have to deal with this junk. Have a look through the archives too if you get a chance. There’s a lot of articles there from the science literature which will show you that you’re not going mad. Let’s hope with lifestyle management and the right drug, you’ll get this thing behind bars where it belongs.

Best … Scott :slight_smile:

Hi Sarah,
so glad you found the mav site,
This place has helped me through some pretty rough times.
it’s full of wonderful supportive people,
All the best with finding some good advice and an understaning ear.


Thanks you guys I appreciate the feedback.

Some of my side effects for the medication I have tried are as follows:
Nortriptyline- I didn’t have any negative side effects from this one it just didn’t help the vertigo or the nausea, and in fact I felt like some days it was worse. This medication did however quiet the ringing in my ears and seemed to stabilize me. I didn’t feel like I was pitching back and to the right as often.
Citalopram- This medication was horrid. I only made it to 20 mg and I was only on 20 mg for about 4 days. It seemed to emphasise my nausea and dizziness. I had to cut back to 5 mg before I could go onto 10mg.
Depakote- Currently on this one. I have been able to make it to 750 mg, which is where we were topping out. I haven’t been able to decide whether or not this one is helping. I seem to have strings of decent days. Although some of my balance issues have returned. That’s about al I can think of on that one. I’m sure there are other nuances that aren’t coming to mind.

I did want to ask people though if they have any of the following:

My vertigo is really heightened when I close my eyes or lay down
Stairwells/stairways in general are highly anxiety provoking. Yesterday at work I was forced to take the stairs and had an anxiety attack in the middle of the flight.
I don’t drive at night anymore it makes me anxious.
I can’t be a passenger in a car because of the movement.
really just movement in general… movies with fast camera action like Avatar…

Just curious.


I’m worse lying down or with eyes closed - but it’s more the visual symptoms rather than vertigo per se. Movement eg driving etc is actually a good thing for me when my symptoms are bad