ZocdocAnswersLoud wooshing and pulsating dizziness for a few seconds at a time, what could it be?

Question

Loud wooshing and pulsating dizziness for a few seconds at a time, what could it be?

I was just walking outside, it's a gorgeous day night, so I decided just to lay down for a bit and look at the moon, but as I was laying down, I got a really loud whooshing in my ear and a pulsating dizziness. It went away after about three pulses so I continued to lay down, but about the 10 seconds later, it happened again, then again a little later, but much stronger, to the point where my vision was starting to distort every pulse. I stood up and walked back inside, and haven't had it since. Any clue what could have happened? Thanks

Answer

Thank you for your question. I believe speaking with your doctor is the best first step. This is hard to say, but there are several different possibilities, some of which focus around your ear. Your inner ear is responsible for both the processing of sound and also some of the functions of balance. There are several canals inside of the middle ear that contribute to sending information to your brain about which direction is up, what direction you are moving, etc. The whooshing sound that you describe could be a variation of tinnitus, which is a sensation of sound that is present when no real sound is being made. Tinnitus and imbalance or room spinning, which is sometimes known as vertigo in certain situations, can sometimes run together. Some examples of that include conditions such as Meniere's disease, semicircular canal dehiscence, and other conditions. There often are related to the intimate relationship between the hearing part of the ear and the balance part of the ear, both of which function to some extent based on fluid in the chambers of the ear. If you are having symptoms such as you describe, speaking with your doctor is a good first step. An otologist is a specialist that just treats ear conditions. Please speak with your doctor.

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