Nystagmus episodes related to sea sickness

J. Attias, C. R. Gordon, A. Bolnick, J. Sadé*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In order to test the possible presence of nystagmus during episodes of sea sickness, we performed electronystagmography (ENG) on nine subjects before and during sailing on a 35-ton vessel in a somewhat heavy sea. In addition, the accelerations of the x, y and z axes of the ship were also monitored and simultaneously recorded. Nystagmus was not detected in pre-sailing recordings, while all of the subjects demonstrated clear positional nystagmus during sailing. The nystagmus was episodic, direction-fixed and its intensity was greater in sea-sick than in nonsick subjects. Our findings suggest that the nystagmus recorded is labyrinthine in origin and stems from temporary peripheral vestibular dysfunction elicited by sea sickness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-87
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 1987


  • Electronystagmography
  • Slow phase velocity


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