Drug treatment of vertigo in neurological disorders

Neurol India. Nov-Dec 2015;63(6):933-9. doi: 10.4103/0028-3886.170097.

Abstract

Vertigo is a common symptom in everyday clinical practice. The treatment depends on the specific etiology. Vertigo may be secondary to inner ear pathology, or any existing brainstem or cerebellar lesion but may also be psychogenic. Central vertigo is a consequence of a central nervous system lesion. It is often associated with a focal neurological deficit. Peripheral vertigo is secondary to dysfunction of the peripheral vestibular system and is usually characterized by an acute vertigo with loss of balance, sensation of spinning in the space or around self, and is exaggerated with changes of the head and body position; no other neurological deficit is present. Some medications may also cause vertigo. Depending on the cause of the vertigo, drugs with different mechanisms of action, physical therapy, psychotherapy, as well as surgery may be used to combat this disabling malady. Symptomatic treatment has a particularly important role, regardless of the etiology of vertigo. We reviewed the current medications recommended for patients with vertigo, their mechanisms of action and their most frequent side effects.