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Vestibular Migraine Help

Hi I’m a junior Neurobiology major in college (ironic right?) and I’ve recently started suffering with what we believe to be Vestibular migraines. I’ve dealt with migraines most of my life, but about two months ago, I got randomly carsick, which is something that never happens to me, then boom. I was hugging the toilet that night because I was so dizzy that it felt like I was gonna puke. Two months later, I feel no better. I’ve had hearing tests, balance tests, and brain scans which have all come out normal. The only thing that has given me relief are steroids but once I come back off them, I’m right back where I started. I’ve tried Meclizine and nothing. Any nausea medicine I’ve been prescribed also does nothing. My vertigo is so bad that I can barely eat or function which is honestly making me depressed. I can’t put the time into my studies that it requires, especially since I’m trying to get into PA school which is extremely competitive, not to mention difficult. My doctor has recently put me on Topamax, which has been interesting… and I’m getting my first round of Botox next week. I can’t live like this. I was galavanting around Europe last semester and now I can barely leave leave my bed. If anyone has some advice or literally ANYTHING I will take it. As well as doctor recommendations in the Nashville area. Mine isn’t the best since he’s only willing to throw drugs at me and refuses to talk about anything else. Is there anything that will work faster than these options? Midterms are in two weeks and I’m soooo behind :/ Please Please Please I feel like I’m dying

  1. Hi @LeynaKrikorian.
    While you're waiting for feedback from the community, I wanted to share some resources to help you connect with a headache specialist in your local area:
    Board Certified Headache Specialist - bit.ly/2zxW6XF
    *UCNS diplomates - bit.ly/32lZZKQ
    National Headache Foundation Certified - bit.ly/3gA4j0u
    I hope that helps. -Warmly, Donna (team member)

    1. my friend had a similar experiences. During her care she learned the crystals in her ears were off. Never heard of it myself until her experience. But this could potentially be the cause of your dizziness and nausea. May be worth further investigation with your Dr.


    2. Thank you for sharing this with us. How are you doing today? Nancy Harris Bonk, Patient Leader/Moderator Migraine.com Team

  2. Yup we checked that out and my inner ear was completely normal…


    1. Thank you for reaching out and sharing your difficult journey with us. Hang in there with midterms coming up - I remember how stressful that time is. Try and maintain a regular sleeping schedule every day, and eat on a regular basis. Migraine brains thrive on routine!
      I'll add my two cents here as well. Good to hear your inner ear is normal. Living with vertigo and/or dizziness is frustrating. It's not uncommon for our migraine patterns and/or symptoms to change over time and/or have more than one type of headache disorder, of which there are over 200!!! Let me share our information on vestibular migraine with you here; https://migraine.com/search?s=vestibular%20migraine. That will be a good starting place.
      I would encourage you to seek out help from a doctor who is a true expert in treating migraine and headache, rather than a general neurologist. Here's the thing - its not that general neurologists aren't find doctors. It's that they have a hard time being experts in one area because they treat many conditions such as stroke, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's and more. These expert doctors have extra board certification in headache medicine, whereas not every neurologist does. This link goes directly to the United Council of Neurological Subspecialties TN doctors; https://www.ucns.org/Online/Online/Diplomate_Directory.aspx?hkey=f8f00552-f924-4ef6-a9bb-6023b1cd341b. This link from the National Headache Foundation takes you to more of these experts; https://headaches.org/resources/healthcare-provider-finder/?tex_certification=aqh&tex_certification=nhfmember&tex_certification=ucns&tex_state=tennessee&view=list.
      Ok, on to a fabulous woman who lives with vestibular migraine and is very active in this area. She has a lot to offer; https://thedizzycook.com/.
      Ok, I'm going to stop now with all the information so I don't totally overwhelm you. Will you let me know what you think? Nancy Harris Bonk Patient Leader/Moderator Migraine.com Team

  3. , I'm sorry to hear that you are suffering. There are not very many options where you are in Nashville, but it looks like Vanderbilt Health has a solid headache department. It might be worth exploring, and it's not too far from you. Here is a link to their headache department page.

    https://www.vanderbilthealth.com/program/headache-and-migraine
    I hope this helps move you forward to find an effective treatment for what you are experiencing. Good luck with your studies! Warmly, Cheryl migraine.com team

    1. I have nothing to add thanks to my wonderful colleagues, but please take a virtual hug from me! It's so hard to be dealing with vertigo and not know why, especially when it's chronic. Have you talked to your profs about what's going on? Does positioning or anything besides steroids bring you relief? I wonder if you might be able to make arrangements to listen to lectures from home so you can lie down and try to absorb some material? Regardless of what's causing your vertigo, your university should have a disability services office or similar to help you come up with a plan for getting the support you need. Don't be embarrassed and don't lose hope -- you are having genuine medical issues and I am willing to bet any good prof will work with you. Please know that we are here to support you! Keep us posted, okay? Sending a hug to you! -Melissa, migraine.com team

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