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Loss of balance while walking, sinus pressure, anxiety, tingling in legs and hands. Due to sinus infection?

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Practicing since : 2001
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In recent days I have developed a feeling that comes and goes of off-balance. It's as if I'm leaning to the right, or being pulled to the right, even though I'm not. It happens if I'm sitting or standing. I had it around 10 AM and now again around 9 PM. I do have some sinus pressure and congestion in my upper sinuses (I can breath, but it is there), and have had for the last 2 weeks+ or so. I called my doctor and got on antibiotics for what she thinks is a sinus infection today. Could this be causing such a sensation of off-balance? I have had high stress/anxiety lately, which has caused tingling/burning sensations in my legs and body, and caused my hands to be shaky. This makes me worry it is something more serious. I can walk fine, but the off-balance feeling is very prevalent.
Posted Mon, 7 May 2012 in Brain and Spine
 
 
Answered by Dr. Shiva Kumar R 51 minutes later
Hello

Thanks for the query.

Regarding the loss of balance and a sense of being pulled to one side, it has several causes. Commonest of them are problems in the inner ear, cerebellum and the peripheral nerves. Your symptoms seem probably related to the inner ear problem which can get involved in infections like sinusitis. However a good clinical examination can confirm and rule out other causes off balance.

Regarding the tingling/burning sensations and the tremulousness is due to high level of stress and anxiety in you. I personally feel there are no serious problems in you based on your current symptoms.

This is a very difficult time for you I am sure. The bottom line is that I think you have to see your Neurologist for a good clinical examination. Most importantly, that will help you figure out if what you are having is only related to inner ear problems.

I thank you again for submitting your question. I hope you find my response to be both helpful and adequate. If you have any additional concerns regarding your question I would be happy to address them.

Sincerely,

Dr Shiva Kumar R
Consultant Neurologist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Loss of balance while walking, sinus pressure, anxiety, tingling in legs and hands. Due to sinus infection? 3 hours later
The off-balance comes and goes, so I'm waiting to see how it does when on antibiotics. I also have been washing my sinuses twice daily to see how that helps.

In regards to the shakiness, does anxiety/stress cause this to happen throughout the day? In addition, when waking from sleep in the morning I notice my body trembles noticeably for a few moments. Could this also be from anxiety? It goes away fairly quickly but it is definitely noticeable.

I do note that I have been waking up repeatedly throughout the night recently, so I'm wondering if this has been somewhat of a cause.

Thanks for the prompt and detailed answer above!
 
 
Answered by Dr. Shiva Kumar R 2 hours later
Hello

Thanks for getting back to me.

I feel it’s a good idea to wait and see till you finish your course of antibiotics. If it persists we will proceed for re-evaluation.

Secondly, stress and anxiety can increase physiological tremors which usually happen when one is conscious about them. Lack of sleep can also increase the tremors. You may try a small dose of sedatives under guidance of your physician to see if that helps you.

I thank you again for submitting your question. I hope you find my response to be both helpful and adequate. If you have any additional concerns regarding your question I would be happy to address them. Please accept my answer if you do not have any further queries.

Sincerely,

Dr Shiva Kumar R
Consultant Neurologist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Loss of balance while walking, sinus pressure, anxiety, tingling in legs and hands. Due to sinus infection? 41 hours later
Well now that I've been on the antibiotics 3x a day for a few days, still no improvement. In fact, its almost worse. I don't fall over, but I definitely can feel the "pull" of falling to the right.

My nose isn't congested, I can breath. My ears pop slightly when I swallow, but they don't hurt at all. I do have pressure in my head, and minor headaches. I feel better overall now, but I still have this balance problem which makes me worry.

Just worried that this is more serious than just an infection. I'm going to visit my Doctor tomorrow in regards to the lack of improvement with antibiotics.

What questions do you recommend that I ask her?
 
 
Answered by Dr. Shiva Kumar R 1 hour later
Hello

Thanks for getting back to me.

Antibiotics might take 3-5 days for it to work. Sometimes if it is due to viral infection antibiotics don't work at all. As the balance problem is better though persisting, I feel there is no need for considering any serious illness at this point of time.

It might help to review back with your treating physician. Change of antibiotics if needed can be done after discussing with your primary. Also get yourself examined clinically for Neurological deficits and that should alleviate all the doubts you have.

I thank you again for submitting your question. I hope you find my response to be both helpful and adequate. If you have any additional concerns regarding your question I would be happy to address them. Please accept my answer if you do not have any further queries.

Sincerely,

Dr Shiva Kumar R
Consultant Neurologist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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