Dizziness typically makes you feel lightheaded, as though you may lose your balance. Sometimes it is accompanied by or confused with vertigo, which is a feeling that the room is spinning around you. Most people have at least one bout of dizziness or vertigo at some point, and usually, it’s not associated with a serious event. However, sometimes dizziness can be associated with a serious issue like heart disease. Common causes of dizziness include:
If you tend to have persistent or recurrent dizziness or if dizziness is associated with other symptoms like chest pain or fever, you should schedule an office visit with Dr. McKenzie.
Dizziness can be associated with many underlying issues. Therefore, diagnosis must begin with a careful review of your symptoms and your medical history, along with a physical exam. Depending on your other symptoms and risk factors, Dr. McKenzie might order blood tests, urinalysis, or other lab work, or you might have an EKG or diagnostic imaging.
Treatment for dizziness depends on the cause of your symptoms. When dizziness is related to an infection like the flu, pneumonia, or an ear infection, Dr. McKenzie will prescribe antibiotics or other medications. You’ll need to take the medications exactly as prescribed, even if your symptoms resolve before the entire prescription has been taken. If you stop taking your medications early, the bacteria that are causing the infection might not be destroyed, which means your infection could return. Dizziness related to medication can be treated by switching to another medicine. When chronic stress or anxiety is to blame, antidepressants or other types of therapy may help. If dizziness is due to a heart-related problem, you might be referred to a cardiologist for additional testing and evaluation. Even though most dizziness is related to non-life-threatening issues, it’s still very important to have your symptoms evaluated as soon as possible to rule out those more serious issues and to get the treatment you need to eliminate those dizzy, lightheaded feelings.
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