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Vestibular Restoration and Adaptation in Vestibular Neuritis and Ramsay Hunt Syndrome With Vertigo

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Abstract

Objective:

To evaluate vestibular restoration and the evolution of the compensatory saccades in acute severe inflammatory vestibular nerve paralysis, including vestibular neuritis and Ramsay Hunt syndrome with vertigo.

Study Design:

Prospective.

Setting:

Tertiary referral center.

Patients:

Vestibular neuritis (n = 18) and Ramsay Hunt syndrome patients with vertigo (n = 13) were enrolled.

Intervention:

After treatment with oral corticosteroids, patients were followed up for 6 months.

Main Outcome Measures:

Functional recovery of the facial nerve was scored according to the House–Brackman grading system. Caloric and video head impulse tests were performed in every patient at the time of enrolment. Subsequently, successive video head impulse test (vHIT) exploration was performed at the 1, 3, and 6-month follow-up.

Results:

Eighteen patients with vestibular neuritis and 13 with Ramsay Hunt syndrome and associated vertigo were included. Vestibular function was significantly worse in patients with Ramsay Hunt syndrome than in those with vestibular neuritis. Similar compensatory saccades velocity and latency values were observed in both groups, in both the caloric and initial vHIT tests. Successive vHIT results showed a significantly higher vestibulo-ocular reflex gain recovery in vestibular neuritis patients than in Ramsay Hunt syndrome patients. A significantly faster reduction in the latency, velocity, and organization of the compensatory saccades was observed in neuritis than in Ramsay Hunt syndrome patients.

Conclusions:

In addition to the recovery of the vestibulo-ocular reflex, the reduction of latency, velocity and the organization of compensatory saccades play a role in vestibular compensation.

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