What exactly are migraine associated vertigo symptoms? For that matter, what is migraine-associated vertigo (MAV)? Is it a disease? What causes it? How is it treated?
Another term sometimes used is vestibular migraine. But neither MAV or vestibular migraine are considered specific types of migraine (according to The International Classification of Headache Disorders). So it better not to look at migraine associated vertigo symptoms, but at migraine associated vertigo as a symptom of migraine disease.
Dizziness, vertigo, and motion sensitivity are not at all uncommon in migraine. Some people experience one of these during every attack, for others it comes and goes.
Vertigo could actually be a clue into which type of migraine you have, because some "official" types of migraine are associated with vertigo more than others.
One type with migraine associated vertigo symptoms is basilar-type migraine. Another is familial hemiplegic migraine.
Sometimes vertigo from migraine is mistaken for Ménière Disease. But vertigo in migraine doesn’t tend to last as long (usually less than 24 hours) and it’s typically accompanied by other migraine symptoms (such as photophobia – a sensitivity to light). In Ménière Disease, the vertigo tends to last longer, and is usually accompanied by hearing loss and tinnitus (ie a ringing in the ears).
Note, however, that it has been suggested that there is a link between the vertigo in migraine and the vertigo in Ménière Disease. More studies need to be done on this.
Just because you have vertigo doesn’t mean you have basilar type migraine or hemiplegic migraine. These types of migraine are fairly rare, but vertigo is fairly common in migraine patients. It’s estimated that 25-35% of migraineurs experience vertigo. Sometimes vertigo may be the only symptom of a migraine attack (ie no pain).
So it’s important not to be satisfied with MAV as a diagnosis – this is a symptom, and it could be a symptom of various types of migraine. Of course, your vertigo could be a symptom of something else.
Make sure you talk to a doctor or specialist who understands your medical history. Tell your doctor if you’ve had a history of motion-sickness. Also, tell her how long the vertigo lasts. Do you have other migraine symptoms? Are you a smoker? Have you experienced hearing loss? What does the "vertigo" feel like? Do you get dizzy? Does the room feel like it’s spinning? Do you feel like you’re about to pass out? All these things may be important.
Looking for other symptoms aside from vertigo or dizziness may help your doctor make a proper diagnosis and get you the treatment that will help the most.