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The Use Of Steroids for Dizziness Questioned

Vestibular neuritis causes dizziness due to a viral infection of the vestibular nerve. A person who has dizziness, imbalance and nausea could be diagnosed with vestibular neuritis. A new study shows steroids could be the key to the treatment of vestibular neuritis. //

Researchers conducted a study to see if a steroid drug, antiviral agent, or a combination of the two could improve the outcome of patients with vestibular neuritis. For the study, 141 patients who were diagnosed with vestibular neuritis were randomly assigned to one of the treatment groups. The treatment groups included the corticosteroid group (that received methylprednisolone, also known as Medrol), the antiviral agent group (that received valacyclovir, also known as Valtrex), a group that received both, and a group that received placebo. Researchers followed up with patients three days after treatment and again 12 months after treatment.

Researchers found that 62 percent of the patients on the steroid improved compared to 39 percent in the placebo group, 36 percent in the antiviral group and 59 percent in the combination group. Researchers say the antiviral drug clearly did not improve the outcome in patients with vestibular neuritis despite the assumed viral cause. In fact, the steroid-alone group had better outcomes than the steroid-antiviral combination group.

Researchers conclude saying that methylprednisolone alone significantly improved the extent of recovery of patients with vestibular neuritis.

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