ENT Logo


Dizziness is a general term which can imply imbalance, lightheadedness, or vertigo, which is a sense of motion when no actual motion is present. The balance system is quite complicated, relying on the eyes, inner ears, pressure sensors in the feet and brain to coordinate appropriately. As such, it is important that every patient with dizziness undergo complete evaluation by his or her primary care physician. Lightheadedness may relate to blood pressure, blood sugar, use of certain medications, or a variety of other causes. Vertigo is more often related to the inner ear, but may also relate to migraine headaches, strokes and other central nervous system conditions. Viral illnesses of the inner ear or trauma may also lead to vertigo, as can certain inner ear diseases such as Meniere's disease. A common reason for vertigo includes BPPV, or benign paroxysmal positioning vertigo, which relates to benign calcifications that have become dislodged in the inner ear. The otolaryngologist can help clarify to what the vertigo may be related, and can recommend specific treatments for each cause. Audiologic evaluation is an important part of the evaluation.