Vestibular Trouble...History

Hello forum,

I’ve just joined up. I had a diagnosis recently from a vestibular rehab physiotherapist in London: “evidence of a peripheral vestibular asymmetry…also possibly suffering from a migraine variant balance disorder”. Am seeking further treatment and have been given gaze stabilisation exercises, etc. to do.

I’ve had terrible health since early 2006. Feeling drained and dazed/confused/“spaced out” - as if my brain is full of fog or cotton wool - for 90% of the time. Barely able to work. Often unable to get out of bed. Some attacks of vertigo (often provoked by visual stimuli) too, although these seem to have faded away. Absolutely exhausted a lot of the time. Waking up most mornings with a headache/“thick head”.

My various doctors have tended to treat all of this as a mental health problem but I think they may be wrong (and about 10 different antidepressant meds have had no effect). Sleep apnoea has been tested for and ruled out three times.

A few months before I got ill in 2006 I had a very bad dose of the flu. I lost my voice for about a month and afterwards I was pretty much deaf in one ear for about 6 weeks. Is it possible that the infection caused some kind of damage in my ear which might have led to the problems I’ve been having since?

Thank you

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Welcome to the forum Alan, sorry you’ve been suffering.

Opinions will vary and you will get the ‘migraine’ explanation over and over (it’s medical dogma), but in my opinion - YES.

I injured my ear and developed MAV 6 months later. I’m convinced my case relates to inflammation in the middle ear space.

This will totally mess up your ears response to movement and this will fluctuate over time and confuse the brain.

The much better news is that inflammation, whilst it can last a long time, probably eventually dies down, so I hope you start to feel much better soon. If things stabilise your brain will be able to compensate better and your symptoms would improve significantly.

I would get an ENT to thoroughly review your middle ear.

Meantime, optimise the MAV protocol and lifestyle.


Interestingly, only earlier in the week I was reading an article linking certain types of depression to inflammation so maybe it won’t be too long before somebody doing research comes up with a link to migrainous symptoms too. Whatever the root cause of the migraine might eventually prove to be, and I’d suggest there may be several alternatives, all that head tightness and ear fullness always feels to me as if it could be inflammation. Helen


Migraines create inflammation. I believe that is known science. What I think some doctors are missing is that the vicious cycle can be started by other causes of inflammation, eg hormonal, injury or infection. I had no migraines up to and including the beginning few months of MAV so migraine was not my cause.


James I agree with what you’re saying. I am in the middle of an MS relapse and my MAV symptoms have flared up alot in the last couple of weeks. Is it too close to consider as coincidence? I do wonder… I’m able to potter around the house albeit uncomfortably. :roll_eyes:



If a medical professional told you have “migraine variant balance disorder”. TRUST HIM ! Not doing so will only result in health anxiety. The VM protocol has worked for many with this illness but it can be a pain in the ass finding the right med. Persevere in finding the right med. Also read the below post


5 posts were split to a new topic: The return of the migraine debate

Thank you everyone for your comments.

A strange thing happened over the weekend. All of my symptoms completely vanished. But I’ve noticed some clear fluid leaking from my left ear (my right ear is ok). Could these two things be linked? If they are, what might it mean? Or is it likely to just be a coincidence?

My ears feel ok apart from that - no pain, hearing loss, etc.

(seeing my doctor in 2 days’ time so I’ll ask him for his thoughts as well of course)


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Like I said, definitely get that checked out by an ENT.

Thank you. Yes, I plan to ask my doctor if that can be done. The vestibular rehab physiotherapist that I mentioned in my first posting wrote to my doctor asking him to refer me on to an otologist/ENT specialist, but I forgot to follow this up (and so did my doctor I guess) so I’ll be talking to him about that this week.

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