Functional dizziness: diagnostic keys and differential diagnosis
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In the 1990s, 9 % of neurological inpatients were found to have functional (then called psychogenic or somatoform) rather than structural neurological disorders of the nervous system as the primary cause of admission . This is a conservative figure, since secondary and minor pseudo-neurological symptoms were not included; other studies later found up to 18–20 % . In a further study, it was reported that 61 % of patients referred to a neurology service had at least one medically unexplained symptom, and 35 % fulfilled the diagnostic criteria for an ICD-10 somatoform disorder .
Functional dizziness is one of the most frequent functional disorders in adult in- and outpatients. In a tertiary referral dizziness unit, it accounted for 19.5 % of 17,700 adult outpatients; thus, it is the second most common diagnosis after benign paroxysmal positional vertigo . The frequencies vary for different countries and study designs: 2.5 , 16 , and 23 %  have been...
KeywordsSpecific Phobia Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo Vestibular Neuritis Vestibular Migraine Superior Semicircular Canal
We thank Judy Benson for copy-editing the manuscript. The work was supported by the German Ministry of Education and Research (Grant Nos. 01EO0901 and 01EO1401) and the Hertie Foundation.
Conflicts of interest
The four authors declare no conflict of interest.
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