The unfortunate reality behind the statistical analysis of vestibular disorders is that not all of them are reported correctly. There is not sufficient data about vestibular disorders in data banks around the globe. This shows the difficulty in acknowledging the existence of this set of complications, which in turn affects the diagnosis and treatment as well.
Living life with the vestibular disease is quite challenging. In regions where health services are not advanced, patients have to go through an absurd route of diagnosis and treatment. Many patients claim that they have been referred to psychiatrists either by their family or the physicians because the symptoms reflected a psychiatric disorder.
In developed and underdeveloped countries, there are several patients struggling with vestibular disorders by using medicines that are not really effective.
Diagnosis and treatment are the later part of the story. The first part is to know what vestibular disorders are. Vestibular disorders are basically balancing dysfunction. These disorders are associated with the inner ear as we know that our ear is divided into three parts: outer, middle, and inner ear.
The inner ear has two parts called the bony labyrinth and the membranous labyrinth. The membranous labyrinth has two functions; first, reception of sound waves and second, to maintain equilibrium. The former role is conducted by the organ of Corti or spiral organ, and the latter function is undertaken by the vestibulocochlear apparatus.
Vestibulocochlear apparatus itself consists of three components: utricle, saccule, and three semi-circular canals. Also, the inner ear contains two types of fluids: perilymph and endolymph. Perilymph is present between bony and membranous labyrinth, whereas the perilymph is present in the membranous labyrinth.
Now that we know the basic anatomy of the inner ear, it is easy to deduce the reason behind the balance dysfunction. The idea behind the occurrence of symptoms of vestibular disorders is the increase in the production or decrease in the drainage of endolymph, which results in its accumulation in membranous labyrinth.
The collection of fluid disturbs the structures inside, which impairs their functioning and causes violent vertigo, disorientation, loss of hearing or ringing of ears, abnormal vision, and other symptoms such as anxiety, arrhythmia, nausea, and diarrhea, and others.
The category of vestibular disorders has a long list of diseases and conditions. Some vestibular disorders are Acoustic Neuroma, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease (AIED), Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV), Tinnitus, Vestibular Paroxymia, Labyrinthitis, Vestibular Neuritis, and Meniere’s Disease, and other. In all vestibular disorders, the classic symptoms remain the same: vertigo, tinnitus, and loss of equilibrium.
Patients suffering from vestibular disorders experience a sudden attack in which these symptoms are experienced. They experience horizontal spinning of the head, the ringing of ears with odd hearing sensation, and they drop to the ground. This attack has no time limits. It can last half an hour to complete the day.
Most of the time, the observers conclude it to be epilepsy or psychiatric problem. After diagnostic tests and proper examination by a physician, it is known to be a vestibular disorder.
A patient of vestibular disorder finds it very challenging to deal with their condition. They have no control over their disease, which makes them anxious. The thought of facing the world with this condition brings them anxiety. They have a fear of losing balance and falling to the ground in front of people because of which they stop leaving their comfort zone altogether.
They find it impossible to handle their situation as well as the embarrassment they bring to themselves. Such patients need not only counseling but also the support of family and friends. They need help and proper medical attention to regain their confidence.
As far as the treatment of vestibular disorders is concerned, there is no cure in the form of medicines. For the alleviation of symptoms, drugs are prescribed. However, for the complete treatment of the condition, medical science has not come up with authentic medicines.
Since there is no cure for the vestibular disease recovery; therefore, for example, Meniere’s disease recovery is made possible by opting alternative medical approach called upper cervical chiropractic treatment.
Upper cervical chiropractic treatment is an alternative medical approach that is pseudoscientific, which is employed to diagnose and treat spinal disorders. According to chiropractors, those people who suffer from vestibular disorders report neurological or musculoskeletal injuries.
These injuries can be ancient, about 10-15 years ago. It is common to develop a vestibular disease after many years of recovery from such injuries. It appears that the recovery is partial. Since the recovery from injuries is not compete, therefore, the after-affects appear quite a long time later.
Such incidences usually include motor accidents or falling off something hitting the spinal cord. Since the spinal cord is a sensitive yet strong component of the signal communicating system, therefore, slight injury to it can cause a severe problem. The same happens in vestibular disorders in which the spinal cord is disturbed.
The part of the brain which controls the equilibrium and balancing of our body is called the brain stem. It is a part of hindbrain. Being in close contact with the spinal cord is prone to get affected by spinal cord disturbance. In an injury, the first two vertebrae of the spinal cord called Atlas (C1) and Axis (C2) are most likely to get affected.
These vertebrae exert pressure over the brainstem, making it malfunction. The malfunctioning is caused by the damage to the Trigeminal nerve, which is the fifth cranial nerve and innervates the Eustachian tube. Thus, damage to the spinal cord damages the brain stem, which in turn damages the Trigeminal nerve.
All of it results in the appearance of the classic triad of symptoms: vertigo, tinnitus, and loss of balance and orientation.
For the successful management of vestibular disorders, including Meniere’s disease recovery, chiropractors are confident about their upper cervical chiropractic technique of fixing the cervical region of the spinal cord.
By manipulation and positioning maneuvers, the Central Nervous System (CNS) functions properly and maintains the equilibrium of the body. Since the balance dysfunction is caused due to inner ear, therefore chiropractors use Epley maneuvers to provide you relief.