35 Symptoms of Perimenopause: Dizziness & Vertigo

by Magnolia on February 4, 2013

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Unlike hot flashes, night sweats and mood swings, dizziness and vertigo are two symptoms of perimenopause which are not discussed very often, although many women, myself included, suffer horribly with it.

During my years of perimenopause, I had several episodes of dizziness and vertigo.  One of the more memorable episodes occurred one day when my son and I were walking outside together.

Without warning, I began to get dizziness and lose my balance, stumbling sideways across the yard.  I clutched and snatched at the air – as if somehow I could save myself – trying to keep from falling.

It didn’t work.  I fell flat on my face onto the ground.

By the time my son came to my rescue, I was fine.  He helped me up, dusted me off, and it was as if it never happened.  Since then, I’ve had several episodes of serious vertigo.  The last episode occurred in 2008, and was so severe, I couldn’t walk, I was nauseous, and could only lie on the floor wailing for someone to help me.  Convinced I was having a stroke, my husband took me to the ER.

After many months of subsequent doctor visits, tests, and medications – all of which remained inconclusive – it was suggested I may have Meniere’s Disease, an inner ear condition which causes loss of balance, vertigo, and dizziness. I was given the medication Meclizine to take when the symptoms came on. It was effective in helping me manage the symptoms.  But, I still had no clear cut answers as to the actual cause.

dizziness and vertigo are symptoms associated with hypothyroidism>

The problem with both dizziness and vertigo, is that they can be traced to so many other conditions. So, when women complain of these symptoms during perimenopause, hormone imbalance is usually not thought to be the cause.

I’ve done many searches on dizziness and vertigo in perimenopause on the Internet over the years, both general, and on medical and research university websites. To date, I’ve turned up very little information. There are plenty of sources which at least acknowledge that women complain about these symptoms during perimenopause, but beyond that, they do not offer much explanation as to the source of the symptoms.

However, I ran across an E-How article recently which caught my attention. While I certainly wouldn’t make E-How my go-to site for research on perimenopause symptoms, I was intrigued by the article because of the recent posts I did last month on hypothyroidism.

According this article, which you can read right here, dizziness and vertigo are symptoms associated with hypothyroidism.  Given that so many women suffer with hypothyroidism during perimenopause, and that a lot of women also complain of dizziness and vertigo during perimenopause, could it be that hypothyroidism is the culprit?

I don’t know, but I’m asking.

The article referenced The Merck Manual of Health and Aging as a source.  I happen to have a current edition of The Merck Manual of Medical Information, but did not see any references to hypothyroidism in the dizziness and vertigo section. I remain intrigued nonetheless.

Dizziness and vertigo will be the subject of blog topics for the month of February here at The Perimenopause Blog.  Given the lack of good information available on the subject, I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to explore this topic for an entire month. However, this little E-How article has changed all of that.

I have also reached out to BodyLogicMD for their opinions on the subject.  I haven’t heard back from anyone yet.  As soon as I do, I will post their response.  In the meantime, I have a renewed interest and enthusiasm for this subject.  With so many women complaining of dizziness and vertigo in perimenopause, somebody needs to be talking more about it.

Why not me?

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{ 169 comments… read them below or add one }

Heidi April 2, 2014 at 2:20 am

Thank you for sharing. Oh my gosh Rebecca!! I am so sorry for all that you have gone through already. I know that wont get rid of your symptoms but it helps a little knowing that you are not alone. I am glad you have kind of figured out what may be the cause for you. Hormone related vertigo is my new “diagnosis”. I hope it will end soon for you and your wonderfully supportive husband. All the best to you!!

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Olga Sesiakin April 11, 2014 at 8:59 pm

Hello, ladies!
I new it!
That my sudden dizziness came two days ago with my period and it is related to hornonal flactuation. I am 44 years old. In the past 3 years have noticed a lot of changes: vaginal itching one week before my period, wheight gain, face flush.
No help from doctors. But after mny trials I treated vaginal crazy itch by taking Estrosmart once or twise daily.
But this dsudden dizziness completely caught me offguard.
Had anybody tried natural hormone treatment?

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Kelly Fraser April 11, 2014 at 5:34 pm

Glad I found this site. I am wondering if anyone has any experience with special needs young women having these symptoms. I have a 25 year old daughter with Downs Syndrome that has been having problems with imbalance the last 3 years. She has ALOT of anxiety going to medical appts. so I do not want to put her through medical testing that isn’t needed. I didn’t think of hormonal imbalance until this last month right before her period she seemed to be worse. Any natural remedies to try?
Thanks for your help.

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Zanna April 16, 2014 at 12:37 pm

Thank you for covering this topic. Now I have a clearer idea of what is going on and which direction to go.

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Emily April 17, 2014 at 2:15 pm

this was a big help! i started experiencing vertigo last year (i’m 43) and just thought it had to do with a couple of ear infections i had in recent years. but now, when i have my period i sometimes i get vertigo as well. i’m going to ask my doctor about this. thank you so much.

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Kim April 19, 2014 at 8:09 am

Interesting. I’ve been trying to find out what the connection is between hormones and physical coordination/ nerve response is. I’ve been asking doctors for years. I am partially paralysed on my left side as a result of a brain injury which occurred over 40 years ago. Right around the start of my period (for the last several years in particular) I can have very bad falls. Not tumbles or tripping—I just go down very suddenly and very hard. But no vertigo involved.

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