Dizziness/Vertigo

Vertigo, or the sensation of “spinning,” may occur as the result of lesions in the brain areas that coordinate balance.

Non-Pharmacologic Management

Physical Therapy

If changes in head position are a component of vertigo, a physical therapist can develop an exercise program that will help to reduce the effects of these positional changes.

Pharmacologic Management

Antihistamines
including Benadryl® (diphenhydramine), Antivert® (meclizine), and Dramamine®(dimenhydrinate)

Mild vertigo may be controlled with these agents, originally used to treat vertigo associated with motion sickness. Dose is usually 25-50 mg every eight hours.

Side effects include drowsiness, blurred vision, constipation, and dryness of the mouth.

Scopolamine Transdermal Patch

This is an anticholinergic agent, meaning that it acts on neurons that use acetylcholine as their transmitter. One of its main uses is the treatment of motion sickness and its associated vertigo.

Side effects are similar to the antihistamines, listed above.

Benzodiazepines including Valium® (diazepam), Klonopin® (clonazepam), and Serax® (oxazepam)

These medications decrease activity in the areas of the nervous system that control the inner ear.

Please refer to the Spasticity and Anxiety sections for details on these drugs.


Go to Introduction to Multiple Sclerosis Symptom Management

Go to Multiple Sclerosis Symptom Listing

Go to Multiple Sclerosis Symptom Medications