My daughter has this due to damage to her vestibular system (inner ear). It was documented by multiple ENGs. The visual system and the balance system work together. She can no longer read because it makes her "dizzy" and sick to her stomach.
-------------------- I found my original identity! It has been a bit over 12 years...can't blame me for forgetting my password, right?!!
Member red (Member # 1886) Registered: 26 November, 2001 70 posts Posts: 164 | From NJ | Registered: Jan 2009
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Nystagmus is right. I have had this . Also had eyes go left and right really fast. The room goes up and down really fast when I have had this. All I can do is close eyes and lay down and wait for it to pass. I hate it. Has gotten better with treatment.
Posts: 211 | From In my house | Registered: May 2007
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Chiari Malformation (Arnold-Chiari) is a serious neurological disorder where the bottom part of the brain, the cerebellum, descends out of the skull and crowds the spinal cord, putting pressure on both the brain and spine and causing many symptoms.
. . . In our otoneurology practice in Chicago, it is extremely rare for us to refer patients for surgery. Rather, we generally make arrangements to follow people on a yearly basis.
In our opinion, lumbar punctures, epidural blocks and related procedures that might cause a spinal fluid leak should be avoided whenever practical in persons with known Chiari malformation. The reason to avoid these procedures is that they may worsen the Chiari. . . .
• Physical therapy and chiropractic manipulation of the neck does not help the Chiari malformation. In fact, it may make matters worse. We have no objection to massage.
• Avoidance of activities that precipitates symptoms (such as straining, athletic activity requiring straining or involving forceful movements of the head on shoulders) is often useful.
As examples, we would suggest that persons with Chiari malformations not lift heavy weights, or play football. . . .
. . . In our opinion, the Chiari malformation is a condition that should be monitored on a once/year basis by a neurologist, and best of all, by a specialized neurologist -- an otoneurologist.
The reason for this is that while a neurosurgeon may ultimately operate on a patient with a Chiari, the huge majority of patients do not need brain surgery for the Chiari. . . .
- Full page at link above.
On the other hand, surgery REALLY helped this little boy: --------
By Andrea Canning and Mellen O’Keefe - May 10, 2008 - ABC News
. . ."The brain literally is squeezed into the spinal column. What happens is you get compression, squeezing, strangulating of the brain stem, which has all the vital functions that control sleep, speech, our cranial nerves, our circulatory system, even our breathing system," Savard said. . . .
Regarding Chiari Malformation; I am unfortuately a bit of an expert in this condition.
I have chiari malformation and it does not require any special imaging beyond an MRI and an CINE Flow to diagnose. A standard MRI of the cervical and brain is what is used to diagnose.
Some doctors will do an MRI w/ contrast to see if a syrinx has developed as a result of the blocked CSF flow.
An MRI of the cervical and brain will show whether or not the cerebellar tonsils herniate through the forum magnum. A CINE Flow will show whether the CSF flow is blocked as a result of the herniation and this is what typically determines if one is a candidate for surgery.
This is the standand protocol for diagnosing chiari malformation.
One of the main reasons that chiari malformation is "missed" on an MRI is not because it will not show the herniation but because most radiologists are trained to only diagnose cm if the herniation is 5mm or more (this measurement is an old standard for diagnosing).
WHen in fact one could have a herniation less then 5mm and still be symptomatic with restriced CSF flow but fail to get a proper diagnosis. This is why seeing a neuosurgeon who specializes in cm is critical for proper diagnosis.
The goal of surgery is to help restore the flow of CSF.
I recently underwent brain and neck surgery to correcet my malformation and as a result of surgical complications had to go on 4 months of steroids.
Thing to remember with steroids is that they can also MASK infection - which they did in my case and now that I am off steroids my lyme symptoms are returning. My guess is the lyme was with me the entire time but was masked by the steriods.
If you need more information on chiari the best resource is asap.org.
Also another post by a lyme patient who also had Chiari.