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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Various causes and clinical characteristics in vertigo in children with normal eardrums.

OBJECTIVE: The differential diagnosis of vertigo in children is extensive. Otitis media and middle ear effusion could be the most common causes of vertigo in children, but there are some problems in detecting the other causes for vertigo because they are one of most frequent diseases of childhood. The purpose of this study is to review the clinical characteristics and both the audiological and vestibular findings of vertigo in children with normal eardrums, who do not show otitis media or middle ear effusion, and to assist in making a differential diagnosis of vertigo. METHODS: The fifty five children (< 16 years old) with vertigo, who visited the Department of Otolaryngology, Ajou University Hospital, Suwon, South Korea between January 1995 and December 2001 were selected for this study. These excluded the patients with abnormal eardrums/tympanograms or those that did not perform questionnaires, audiological, or vestibular evaluations. They were retrospectively analyzed for clinical symptoms, vestibular functions, and differential diagnosis. RESULTS: The most common causes for vertigo in children were migraine in 17 (30.9%) and benign paroxysmal vertigo of childhood (BPVC) in 14 (25.5%). Other less frequent causes included four cases of trauma, two cases each of Meniere's disease, delayed endolymphatic hydrops, benign positional vertigo, and one case only for cerebellopontine angle tumor, seizure, acute vestibular neuritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, leaving ten cases (18.2%) as unclassified. Abnormal findings were noted in 13 (23.6%) in pure tone audiogram, 3 (5.5%) in positioning test, 6 (10.9%) in bithermal caloric test, and 36 (65.5%) in rotation chair test. CONCLUSIONS: The vertigo in children with normal eardrums, who did not show otitis media or middle ear effusion, was most commonly caused by migraine and BPVC. These findings have shown to be very different from those with adult vertigo. The evaluation of vertigo in children requires a questionnaire for extensive and complete history taking, audiograms and vestibular function tests. And in selected cases, electroencephalography, hematological evaluation, imaging of the brain or temporal bone should be performed.[1]


  1. Various causes and clinical characteristics in vertigo in children with normal eardrums. Choung, Y.H., Park, K., Moon, S.K., Kim, C.H., Ryu, S.J. Int. J. Pediatr. Otorhinolaryngol. (2003) [Pubmed]
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