Panic Attacks - am I the only one?


Just a curiosity question. I know a lot of us get anxiety along with the MAV, but does anyone else have actual panic attacks from this? I mean, sweaty palms, racing heart, the works?

The reason I ask is because I get them from time to time, and one of the docs I see thinks that this means that my dizziness is anxiety related and not MAV. In his mind, MAV would not cause a panic attack. Some generalized anxiety yes, but not an acute attack. I see where he’s coming from, and a lot of the other symptoms I have seem to be strongly linked with anxiety (pins and needles feeling on the sides of my head, that spacey feeling where things don’t seem real, sleep problems, etc), however it seems that MAV can have these same symptoms. This crap is so damn confusing sometimes.

well, for me i know for sure that MAV CAN & has lead to a panic attack.

If this happens EVERY TIME you get dizzy i may think about going on some medication for anxiety & see what happens.

I know that just Thinking about getting dizzy in public can make me anxious & THAT anxiety can set off a dizzy spell/nausea/etc…

Many yrs ago i saw a dr that told me i was just Anxious, & i needed to take medication, that would fix it. he was wrong. I know my body well enough to know he is wrong. I am not anxious when i am in the middle of dinner & i get the spins…or watching a movie or laying in bed.

the only symptom of yours i Dont have is pins & needles… you are right…this condition is so very hard to diagnoise. Ive been dizzy for 11 yrs & have JUST this yr found out its MAV.

I absolutely have the whole nine yards of panic attacks sometimes with this mess… Palpitations, hyperventilation, fight or flight reflex as it’s called… And it’s definitely MAV and not the other way around. It would be difficult not to have one sometimes when literalky your “center” is unbalanced… Benzos have definitely helped as has a small dose of zoloft (25 mg)… And don’t worry you will get better and be without meds at some point!! At least that’s my plan!!

Absolutely anxiety is part of my symptoms, been dizzy for 4 years, had scd surgerys an tried lexapro…finally taking verapamil and BuSpar…hoping combo is the answer, just a few weeks in now.

Panic attacks have played a huge role in my MAV symptoms. The night before my first “big bang” MAV event I had a panic attack for no apparent reason! Pins and needles in the hands and feet, couldn’t breathe and thought I was dying. Throughout all of my episodes of dizziness I have had unrelenting anxiety and panic, but when the dizziness clears and things settle down I have much less anxiety. I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder a long time ago in my teens, and do get anxious over ridiculous things frequently in everyday life but it has always been something I can deal with on my own without medication. I usually know I’m being crazy and can calm myself down. Until this MAV business started. During and about a week after a dizzy episode I would have to take Ativan everyday just to function because I would wake up anxious.

I think anxiety and dizziness are hugely related just because of where the centers for both are located in the brain. But I would think that if your anxiety was causing your dizziness you would know, rather than getting dizzy first and then having a panic attack. Or just feeling anxious all the time because of the anticipation of getting dizzy. That is completely normal because being dizzy is extremely scary. Hope that made at least a little bit of sense.

My panic attacks were definitely related to MAV even tho one neuro told me that not everyone who has vertigo gets panic attacks - made me feel as tho’ it was my own fault. Now I know better and I bet loads of us who have MAV have experienced that awful dizziness & panicked. I had one really bad attack one evening when I was so dizzy, hyperventilating & shaking so much my hubby called an ambulance. I don’t remember much about it but I experienced an episode of TGA (Transient Global Amnesia). The ambos helped me with deep breathing into cupped hands & walked me around which helped me calm down. I had some Ativan & they suggested 2mg to help me sleep. Next morning I was fine & memory was OK (except those few hours during the panic attack). My GP said I would be OK & that TGA didn’t cause any brain damage. After that scare, I saw a psychologist who taught me some great meditation skills & I found they really calmed me down when I was dizzy & panicky. The Prothiaden I’m taking has also helped deal with the panic and I always carry the Ativan with me in case of emergency!

My Neuro told me that it is impossible to have vertigo, have your world feel off kilter and not have some form of anxiety from it. I also get full blown panic attacks. Sometimes they come out of the clear blue. Usually though I get them when I am really anxious about the MAV. Like if I have a function I have to go to I can get myself really worked up worried about how bad the vertigo is going to be, etc.
I have a long history with anxiety unfortunately, though I have never taken medications for it. I’ve always just sort of dealt with it and the occasional panic attack. It never really interfered with my life. Now with MAV the panic attacks are rampant. And I never know when one will come out of the clear blue. I’m also worried that if the MAV ever goes away I’m going to have some sort of PTSD from it. I know that may sound nuts to some of you’ll but I’ve had PTSD before and I’m terrified I’ll get it again.
Thank goodness for Valium! It really helps during those tough times!

I have had panic disorder since I was 15 (I’m 43 now). My first MAV attack in April lead to a terrible panic attack that previously had been controlled by medication. It was the scariest one I have ever had (and I have had hundreds over the years). They are absolutely related for me. The MAV is the antecedent to the panic attack and benzos help both. Dizziness was never part of my panic attacks before. How can one be off balance, feel loopy and goofy without getting freaked out? I think fight or flight naturally just kicks in when the brain says “something is wrong, danger, danger!!”.

I absolutely have full-blown panic attacks, and it’s related to my MAV. I didn’t get them pre-MAV, and I didn’t get them nearly as much when my MAV was better. Now that the MAV is worse again, the panic attacks are coming back. My worst ones, I actually wake up in the middle of the night with them (I had one quite recently too, when it hasn’t happened in years). I practically jump out of bed: dizzy, lightheaded, heart racing, shaking, sweaty, can’t breathe, feel like I’m going to pass out. The first time I had one like that, my husband was out of town and I actually called an ambulance at like 4am…I thought I was having a heart attack or something. Now, I am much better at being able to tell myself: “this is just a panic attack, you’ll be ok” and it will settle down faster (although still leaves me feeling dizzy for a while).

I agree with the poster who said sometimes, just thinking about getting dizzy —> anxiety —> panic attack/actually being dizzy. My vertigo started with a BPPV attack where I just felt a little bit off, then suddenly I was slamming into walls, gripping onto the floor, feeling like I was going to fall off the earth. Now, I often get panic attacks when again, something feels just a little bit off. Just that anticipation that something actually bad might happen. I hate it.