bims-madeba Biomed news
on Mal de débarquement syndrome
Issue of 2018‒11‒18
two papers selected by
Jun Maruta
Mount Sinai Health System


  1. Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2018 Jul;2018 1931-1934
    Chen Y, Tang JH, Shou G, Gleghorn D, Doudican BC, Besio W, Cha YH, Ding L, Yuan H.
      Multimodal neuroimaging, such as combined electroencephalography (EEG) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), are being increasingly used to investigate the human brain in healthy and diseased conditions. However, certain neuroimaging data are typically acquired in different body positions, e.g., supine fMRI and upright EEG, overlooking the effect of body position on signal characteristics. In the current study we examined EEG signals in three different positions, i.e., supine, standing and sitting, in patients with a balance disorder called mal de debarquement syndrome (MdDS). Individuals with MdDS experience a chronic illusion of self-motion triggered by prolonged exposure to passive motion, such as from sea or air travel. The degree of perception of rocking dizziness is modulated by body position, suggesting a physiological effect related to body positions. In the present study, EEG features were quantified as peak frequency, peak amplitude, and average amplitude of the alpha band due to its strongest signal characteristics compared to other frequencies. The effect of body position was examined in EEG features from data acquired before and after the individuals received treatment with repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation. Our results indicate a significant effect of body positions on the EEG signals in MdDS.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1109/EMBC.2018.8512699
  2. Cureus. 2018 Sep 07. 10(9): e3270
    Shankar Kikkeri N, Siddiqui JH.
      Mal de Debarquement syndrome (MdDS) is an uncommon neurological disorder seen in women, mostly in their fourth decade of life. It is characterized by a constant sensation of swaying or motion after one disembarks from a vehicle such as a ship or plane following a lengthy trip. These symptoms temporarily subside when the patient is subjected again to passive motion like driving a car. There are no definitive diagnostic tests for Mal de Débarquement syndrome. It is a diagnosis of exclusion and does not have an effective treatment. The symptoms usually resolve spontaneously in about a year. We report a case of a 47-year-old female who presented with a feeling of imbalance following about a four-week cruise, which temporarily subsides during a bicycle ride or a car drive. We report this case, as this condition may not be well-known and probably under-reported. Prospective travelers should be warned and patients can perhaps be cautiously reassured.
    Keywords:  cruise trip; disembarkment; imbalance
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7759/cureus.3270