Vertigo is a feeling of spinning when a person is standing still. It can be caused by many different health problems.
The inner ear and nerves sense the position of a person's head and body. Vertigo can happen when there are problems with these nerves and structures. It may also be due to problems in the brain, but this is not as common.
The two main types of vertigo are:
Peripheral vertigo is common and caused by problems with the inner ear. Causes may be:
Dizziness and vertigo. The Merck Manual Professional Edition. Available at: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/ear,-nose,-and-throat-disorders/approach-to-the-patient-with-ear-problems/dizziness-and-vertigo?query=vertigo. Updated March 2019. Accessed April 8, 2020.
Living with a vestibular disorder. Vestibular Disorders Association website. Available at: https://vestibular.org/living-vestibular-disorder/everyday-challenges. Accessed April 8, 2020.
Muncie HL, Sirmans SM, et al. Dizziness: Approach to Evaluation and Management. Am Fam Physician. 2017 Feb 1;95(3):154-162.
Last reviewed February 2020 by
EBSCO Medical Review Board
Rimas Lukas, MD
Last Updated: 4/8/2020
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