Prolonged Vertigo Associated with Nystagmus: an Organic or a Psychiatric Disorder? – Discussing a Case Report

Naeimehossadat Hosseini, Amir Moghaddam-Ahmadi, Mohammad Ali Abdolkarimi Dawarani, Reza Bidaki, Aboozar TajikSafa


It is mostly organic diseases that are considered when a neurological sign or symptom is present in the history of a patient; however, there may be psychiatric problems also present which could be missed. We report a case to discuss the possibility of the presence of an organic or psychiatric underlying disorder when facing neurological problems.

Case Presentation:

We report a case of chronic headache accompanied by vertigo and multiple medical problems including nystagmus and abdominal pain without any significant findings on physical exam that was diagnosed to have a somatization disorder (Not Otherwise Specified or NOS).


We did not find any documents regarding the presence of true nystagmus as a functional, factitious or psychosomatic disorder; however, voluntary nystagmus has been reported in some cases with a series of fast (saccadic) back-to-back eye movements, without any interval or slow phase. It is recommended that psychiatrists and neurologists search for a psychiatric disorder as well; even if the problem is supposed to have an organic nature like nystagmus or vertigo, especially when associated with a prolonged, resistant, or unusual course.
Nystagmus; Vertigo; Somatization disorder

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