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What causes persistent dizziness in an elderly woman?

Answered by
Dr. Sudhir Kumar


Practicing since :1994

Answered : 5895 Questions

Posted on Tue, 13 Sep 2016 in Brain and Spine
Question: Hi,
My mom is 87. She has few health issues, although she has been experiencing dizziness for the past month. That has mostly been taken care of by removing a plug of earwax and Meclazine. She doesn't have high blood pressure, heart issues, or diabetes. She takes Estrogen. I believe cholesterol meds were recommended but she declined to take them. She keeps her cholesterol within reasonable levels with diet, and she had a physical this summer.
Yesterday my brother had difficulty waking her up. She mumbled unintelligible gibberish, and was finally able to wake up and speak intelligibly after several minutes. This happened to her at my house a year or so ago, but she was OK by the time the paramedics arrived. She says it's happened a couple of other times when she was home alone. She says she can understand the person speaking to her but can't quite awaken for several minutes. She also reports she has had an MRI after the incident in my presence a year or so ago, and the MRI did not indicate any damage as would be expected if this had been a stroke. At least once she had what appeared to be a stroke but was diagnosed as a migraine such as the one newscaster Serene XXXXXXX had on air a few years ago.

What is happening to my mom, and what should be done about it?

Thank you,
Answered by Dr. Sudhir Kumar 25 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Symptoms are suggestive of TIA

Detailed Answer:

Thank you for posting your query.

I am Dr Sudhir Kumar, Neurologist and would try my best to help you.

I have noted the symptoms of your mother, and they are suggestive of TIA (transient ischemic attack). In this condition, the blood supply to a part of brain gets reduced for a short period. TIA, as such is not harmful, as complete recovery occurs. However, it is referred to as XXXXXXX brain stroke, and several patients with TIA, may develop major strokes in the future.

I noted that her MRI was normal last time. However, we should again do an MRI of brain with angiogram, and carotid doppler. Subsequently, she would need to be started on aspirin and rosuvastatin to prevent strokes in future.

I hope my answer helps. Please get back if you have any follow up queries or if you require any additional information.

Wishing you good health,

Dr Sudhir Kumar MD (Internal Medicine), DM (Neurology) XXXXXXX Consultant Neurologist
Apollo Hospitals, XXXXXXX XXXXXXX
Click on this link to ask me a DIRECT QUERY:

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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