How a Car Crash Can Cause Vertigo

You may feel off-balance or like the whole world is spinning around you. It’s hard to get anything done. You didn’t feel this way before your car accident. However, now you can’t drive, work, or go about your daily activities, and you may be wondering what to do next.

The dizziness and sensation that everything is moving around you are known as vertigo. Some temporary dizziness at the accident scene could occur from the trauma and surprise of the crash. However, if the dizziness persists, then it is essential to find out the cause so that you can get proper medical treatment.

Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo

Vertigo is often a symptom of a condition known as benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). Other symptoms of BPPV include loss of balance, nausea, and vomiting.

If you experience these symptoms after a car accident, then your doctor needs to know the cause of your symptoms before recommending treatment. If BPPV is suspected, then your doctor may:

  • Conduct a physical exam to determine whether your dizziness is related to certain eye movements.
  • Order tests such as an ENG, VNG, or MRI. ENGs and VNGs can detect abnormal eye movements. MRIs may rule out other causes of dizziness that have nothing to do with BPPV.

Without treatment, it may take weeks or months for BPPV to resolve on its own. You may be unable to earn an income and you miss out on important activities during this time. Your doctor may help speed up your recovery by performing:

  • Canalith repositioning. Canalith repositioning is an in-office procedure that involves simple maneuvers of your head that moves particles from your inner ear into another part of your ear where they are reabsorbed and unlikely to cause you dizziness or other symptoms.
  • Surgery. If canalith repositioning is unsuccessful, then your doctor may recommend surgery.

While BPPV is a common cause of vertigo, it is not the only reason car accident victims experience vertigo.

How Did You Get Vertigo From a Car Crash?

As you consider your treatment options, you may wonder how this injury could have happened in a car accident. BPPV can occur because of a car accident head injury. Other types of vertigo can also develop after a car accident. You could experience dizziness or vertigo if you suffer:

  • Whiplash. Whiplash is a common accident injury and occurs when the neck is stretched abnormally. The unnatural stretching of the neck can cause nerve damage, which results in vertigo.
  • Traumatic brain injury. Dizziness and loss of balance are common traumatic brain injury and concussion symptoms.
  • Broken bone. If you break one of your temporal bones, then dizziness may occur.

Since there are many potential causes of vertigo, we encourage you to get medical attention as soon as possible so that you can get an accurate diagnosis and begin treatment.

What to Do If You Experience Vertigo After a Car Accident

Your first step is to recognize that you need medical help, see a doctor, and follow your doctor’s treatment plan. The cause of your vertigo must be diagnosed so that it can be treated appropriately.

Additionally, you should contact an experienced Illinois car accident lawyer. Your lawyer will find out exactly why your accident occurred and make sure that all of your legal rights are protected.

We will fight hard to get you the damages that you deserve for all of your accident injuries, including vertigo. Your damages may include compensation for past and future:

  • Healthcare costs
  • Lost income
  • Physical pain
  • Emotional suffering
  • Out-of-pocket expenses

The Illinois statute of limitations limits your time to pursue a financial recovery. Accordingly, we encourage you to take action today by contacting our Illinois car accident injury attorneys for a free, no-obligation consultation. We are here for you 24/7/365, so please reach out to us today to schedule your initial case evaluation by phone, video conference, or in-person at our Bloomington, Gurnee, or Rockford office.


Jason F. Abraham
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Helping car accident and personal injury victims throughout Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa since 1993.