Doctor's Notes on Dizziness
Dizziness is a very nonspecific symptom with a number of causes. Medically, dizziness can refer to vertigo, lightheadedness, feeling faint, or unsteadiness. Some of the multiple conditions that may cause lightheadedness include hypotension (low blood pressure), hypertension (high blood pressure), dehydration, endocrine disorders, heart conditions, and orthostatic hypotension.
Dizziness can be a temporary symptom that goes away on its own. It may be accompanied by a sense of spinning or that one’s surroundings are spinning (known as vertigo). Vertigo is often a result of disturbances in the inner ear or the balance-regulating areas of the brain. Lightheadedness can result from altered blood flow to the brain due to any cause. Depending on the cause, dizziness may have other associated symptoms like chest pain, sweating, weakness, nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, or fever.
Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.