Vestibular disorders in patients with migraine.
Department of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology,
Head and Neck Surgery,
Semmelweis University Medical School,
Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol 1997;254 Suppl 1:S55-7
Vestibular symptoms frequently occur in patients with migraine headache. The common migraine is defined in neurology as a unilateral, pulsating headache, which may be associated with nausea and vomiting, and lasts one or several days. In the classic form patients have visual prodromal symptoms. Focal neurological signs in the migraine complique include, for example, oculomotor palsy and vestibular abnormalities. This so-called vestibular migraine is different from basilar migraine, which involves the irritation of the cervical sympathetic system, and can cause symptoms that resemble transient brainstem ischemia. In order to evaluate vestibular dysfunction electronystagmography (ENG) was used. Patients frequently had abnormal caloric test responses, especially with a directional preponderance, and most had a spontaneous nystagmus. In the migraine attack the patients are presumed to have hypersensitivity of the labyrinth with nausea and vomiting, while in the headache-free period the ENG was almost normal. At present, we have had a high success rate in treating patients with piracetam. Diazepam was used to treat basilar migraine and flunarizine to prevent vestibular migraine.