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Dizziness / Vertigo


There are many different ways in which dizziness can present, including spinning sensation (vertigo), lightheadedness or syncope, or balance impairment.  There are a wide range of possible causes for dizziness. At NorthWest ENT & Allergy, we can work with you to determine whether your dizziness may be the result of an ENT problem.  Possible ENT causes of dizziness include benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), Meniere’s, labyrinthitis, vestibular neuritis, acoustic neuroma, vestibular migraine, or eustachian tube dysfunction.  Determining the cause of your dizziness will involve a detailed history and examination, and in some cases in-depth vestibular testing.


If you are coming in for dizziness, we will often include an audiometric evaluation in your initial appointment.  The audiometric evaluation consists of a test to determine hearing thresholds, tympanometry (meausures ear drum compliance and pressure), word discrimination testing, and often acoustic reflex testing.  The results of this can be used to determine if there are any asymmetries that could suggest an underlying disorder of the middle or inner ear. 


In some cases, after your appointment your provider will want to you to have additional testing.  We can help coordinate in-depth vestibular testing which may include videonystagmography (VNG) to look at detailed eye movements using infrared technology.  Additional testing options available include electrocochleography (Ecog) in which electrodes are placed near the cochlea of the inner ear to measure electrical response, or vestibular evoked myogenic potential (VEMP) which evaluates how certain muscles respond when sound reaches the inner ear. In other cases, imaging such as an MRI may be recommended.