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May 18, 2006

Most vertigo cases related to hearing problems

Three out of four cases of vertigo are related to hearing disorders.

It is estimated that 2 percent of the general population suffer from vertigo. Among those, 75 percent also suffer from hearing problems. This was the conclusion reached at the “Scientific Congress on Vertigo, Cholesteatoma and Otitis”, held by Gaes and the Spanish Society of Otorhinolaryngology and Neck and Head Pathology.

People suffering from vertigo experience a sensation of movement that does not exist, and/or other frequently related symptoms such as hearing loss, buzzing in the ears, headaches, dizziness, vomiting and loss of balance.

Common among the elderly

The prevalence of vertigo is highest, as high as 30 percent, among old people. Among young adults, the prevalence is 2 percent, according to Dr. Gonzalo Corvera, specialist surgeon in otorhinnolaryngology and founder of the Mexican Society of Otology and Otoneurology.

A number of factors cause vertigo, among them disorders of the vestibular where the organ of equilibrium is located, infections in the middle and inner ear, trauma to the head, viruses, drugs and a lack of blood flow. “Due to the proximity of the vestibular to the cochlea in the inner ear, it is quite usual that hearing is affected,” added Dr. Corvera.

Check the hearing

Vertigo cases represent 5 percent of all visits to general practitioners, according to Dr. Nicolás Pérez, of the Clinic University of Navarra. It is, therefore, recommended for vertigo sufferers to have their hearing tested, as 3 out of four cases of vertigo are related to hearing disorders.

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