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Forum Name: Neurology Topics

Question: lightheaded for weeks


 dizzygrl - Mon Nov 03, 2008 10:01 am

Hi. I have been lightheaded for weeks, with no relief. It all began after a long drive (15 hours), when I got out of the car and felt as if I hadn't eaten or drinken enough water and was wozzy on my feet. I had a big steak dinner and went to sleep thinking nothing of it. Well, that was approx. six weeks ago and I have felt the same everyday since! It is the feeling like I am walking on a boat in bad weather. Nothing spins, per se, and I do not get nauseous. But I cannot drive, and the walking is slowly getting easier and easier, not because it is getting better, but I am getting used to it and it is a bit more tolerable. Still, it is very disturbing and I cannot contiue my life normally until I can drive. When I sit behind the wheel of my car, i feel like my head is detached from the rest of my body. I went to a GP and she said I had BPPV and it would go away in a few weeks. She prescribed me meclizine, which has not helped. That was four weeks ago and every discription i read of BPPV does not match the symptoms?! I have a very tight neck (for years) and am wondering if there is any connection. I did go to a Chiropractor, and she claimed she would help me with a regimine of three appointments a week for three months! My husband thought it was a bit much (and a lot of money) for a long shot. I will try to make an appot. with a Neurologist, but it may be a long wait to get in. Does this sound neurological? Should I go back to the Chropractor? I am not sure where to go from here. Please help!
 John Kenyon, CNA - Wed Dec 17, 2008 10:01 pm

User avatar Hi there -

No, your research has led you to a correct assumption: your symptoms, while somewhat similar to BPV, don't really sound like it. They do, however, sound as though they could be caused by cervical vertigo, which is an often controversial finding. I suspect it in part because of the events that preceded the onset of symptoms. Fifteen hours of driving might well cause cervical strain which could set off something like this. It is definitely something of neurological involvement, if not origin (hard to say for certain), and a neurologist would be the best sort of specialist to get to the bottom of this. It's already become disruptive and disabling. Meclazine wouldn't be much help, so that's unsurprising. If this were BPV, that would probably have controlled the symptoms, which would have resolved by now anyway.

While there are numerous other possible causes of this, the long drive strongly suggests probable cervical strain (we can become tremendously tense while driving long distances, even though we may feel superficially relaxed). It's a possibility worth exploring. If not that, then there's a whole laundry list of potential problems to be ruled out. I hope your wait for the consult isn't terribly long.

Best of luck to you. Please follow up with us as needed.

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