Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2016; 20 (13): 2786-2791

White matter lesions and vascular vertigo: clinical correlation and findings on cranial magnetic resonance imaging

P. Gamba, M. Pavia

Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Poliambulanza Foundation Hospital, Brescia, Italy.

OBJECTIVE: Vestibular disorders and anxiety are closely related, probably because they share some neuronal pathways. Ageing and patient comorbidities are important facilitating factors, and multiple vascular risk factors could contribute to the onset of a vestibular syndrome called vascular vertigo. White matter lesions (WMLs) are often seen on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans of elderly people and are related to various geriatric disorders, including dizziness. The cause of this correlation could be the disruption of neuronal networks that mediate higher vestibular cortical function. Numerous neuronal pathways link the vestibular network with limbic structures and the prefrontal cortex modulates anxiety through its connections to the amygdala. These could also explain nausea and sickness. The aim of the present work was to investigate the correlation between WML, vascular vertigo and cognitive functions.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: Our team at the Poliambulanza Foundation Hospital of Brescia studied 90 patients (mean age 75 years) suffering from vascular vertigo with positive WML on MRI, by mapping the lesions and by grading anxiety and sickness symptoms. Furthermore, the same patients were treated with sulodexide (a glycosaminoglycan with antithrombotic activity) for 90 days (500 LSU/day for the first 45 days and 250 LSU/day for the following 45 days) to evaluate the efficacy on the vestibular symptoms.

RESULTS: The results showed that the most frequent WML sites were frontal (n=34) and capsule (n=30) areas. Patients had a significant improvement on anxiety and sickness scores (p=0.0001 and p=0.02 respectively) after sulodexide treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: In patients with vascular vertigo we confirmed the correlation between dizziness and anxiety and showed preliminary data regarding the efficacy of sulodexide in relieving in these patients anxiety and sickness.

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To cite this article

P. Gamba, M. Pavia
White matter lesions and vascular vertigo: clinical correlation and findings on cranial magnetic resonance imaging

Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci
Year: 2016
Vol. 20 - N. 13
Pages: 2786-2791