I recently saw a patient with vertigo who asked me very innocently, “Can I have more than one thing that causes symptoms of vertigo?”

I smiled at the question knowing the dizziness is usually multifactorial.

I explained that in his particular case, this individual had about seven things that were all contributing to the symptoms of vertigo and dizziness.

All of the root causes need to be addressed separately and individually with different strategies to reduce the symptoms, if not completely eliminate them.

The patient and his wife then responded by saying that all the doctors they had consulted were looking for just one cause of the symptoms. The doctors had ultimately concluded that the patient had Ménière’s disease, prescribing a common medication for that condition.

However, he had gotten no relief from that medication and the couple told me that when they did their own research to learn about the diagnosis. Once they learned more, they did not think his symptoms in any way fit the profile of a typical Ménière’s disease case.

I definitely agreed with their assessment of their situation, so Ménière’s disease was not on my list of possible contributing factors to his symptoms of vertigo.

The good news is that I completed a Root Cause Evaluation and Treatment to determine his prognosis. It is excellent for a full recovery – now that we’ve eliminated Ménière’s disease as a potential contributing factor.

He and his wife were elated to know that hope was restored for them to return to a normal life.

In my experience, I have never met a single patient with only one cause of dizziness and vertigo.

And unfortunately I have met many patients who were diagnosed with Ménière’s disease, but had symptoms that did not correlate in any way with an appropriate Ménière’s diagnosis.

Not only to mention that when you have something like the Ménière’s disease or syndrome on your record, it can interfere with your eligibility to drive a car so it creates a very serious situation.

So my answer to his initial question is “Yes!” There is usually more than one contributing factor to cause dizziness and vertigo, and I would be suspicious of any healthcare provider who tries to pin your symptoms on just one cause, give you a medication for your symptoms and dismiss you.

It is a good idea to get a second opinion.


This blog is provided for informational and educational purposes only. The content and any comments by Dr. Kim Bell, DPT are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. The details of any case mentioned in this post represent a typical patient that Dr. Bell might see and do not describe the circumstances of a specific individual.

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