Q. Vertigo and nausea with violent shaking coming from my shoulders. What could it be?

Answered by
Dr. Vinay. S. Bhat
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on May 09, 2018 and last reviewed on: Jan 18, 2023

Hello doctor,

I am a 30-year-old woman. I have been having rough episodes of vertigo and nausea along with violent shaking that seems to be coming from my shoulders. I have pins and needles all the way down to my legs. I went to the ER twice because my condition suddenly and abruptly worsened. The doctor told me it could be Meniere's disease. I had been diagnosed with a TMJ disorder a few months ago and had my jaw popped. Since then it has been excruciating at times.

All the research studies I have done do not include tremors. Vertigo never really goes away. I am so afraid that I have meningitis or something that is life-threatening. This has been going on for about a week and a half. I have fluid in my ears and have had musculoskeletal problems with my neck. There are also strange warm sensations behind my eyes. I have pain in my left shoulder that shoots down my arm. I had an EKG and blood work done and both were normal. I had a CT scan done about six months ago. I am going absolutely crazy. It is causing me to have awful panic attacks that I cannot sleep. I am scared of my life. Currently, I am on Melatonin, Citalopram 20 and OTC Ibuprofen. Please help.



Welcome to

Recurrent vertigo and nausea and associated neck pain which is radiating to shoulders and hands are suggestive of a rare form of vertigo known as cervical vertigo.

Usually, the causes of cervical vertigo are acute cervical spine injury, cervical spondylosis, cervical spondylolisthesis, severe cervical myofascial pain, etc.

The neck muscles play an important role in the maintenance of our balance and any abnormalities of the cervical spine with associated muscles can cause severe attacks of vertigo.

Antivertigo drugs can give symptomatic relief but you may need to consult an orthopedist or a spine surgeon for further treatment.

For the time being, you can use a cervical collar which can stabilize the neck and avoid any movements which can trigger vertigo attacks.


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