ICD-10 Diagnosis Code H81

Disorders of vestibular function

Diagnosis Code H81

ICD-10: H81
Short Description: Disorders of vestibular function
Long Description: Disorders of vestibular function
This is the 2018 version of the ICD-10-CM diagnosis code H81

Not Valid for Submission
The code H81 is a "header" and not valid for submission for HIPAA-covered transactions.

Code Classification
  • Diseases of the ear and mastoid process (H60–H95)
    • Diseases of inner ear (H80-H83)
      • Disorders of vestibular function (H81)

Information for Patients


Balance Problems

Have you ever felt dizzy, lightheaded, or as if the room is spinning around you? If the feeling happens often, it could be a sign of a balance problem. Balance problems can make you feel unsteady. You may also have blurred vision, confusion, and disorientation. They are one cause of falls and fall-related injuries, such as a hip fracture.

Some balance problems are due to problems in the inner ear. Others may involve another part of the body, such as the brain or the heart. Aging, infections, head injury, certain medicines, or problems with blood circulation may also cause balance problems.

It is important to see your doctor about balance problems. They can be a sign of other health problems, such as an ear infection or a stroke. Your doctor may send you to a specialist for a diagnosis. You may need a hearing test, blood tests, or imaging studies of your head and brain. Other possible tests look at your eye movements, and how your body responds to movement.

In some cases, treating the illness that is causing the disorder will help with the balance problem. Exercises, a change in diet, and some medicines also can help.

NIH: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

  • Dizziness (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Vertigo-associated disorders (Medical Encyclopedia)


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Dizziness and Vertigo

When you're dizzy, you may feel lightheaded, woozy, or disoriented. If you feel like you or the room are spinning, you have vertigo. These feelings may make you lose your balance.

Dizziness can have many different causes. A sudden drop in blood pressure or being dehydrated can make you dizzy. Many people feel lightheaded if they get up too quickly from sitting or lying down. Certain medicines and problems with your inner ear may cause dizziness. So can motion sickness. Sometimes dizziness can be a symptom of other disorders.

As people get older, they may have more health problems and take more medicines. This makes them more likely to have problems with dizziness and balance.

Dizziness usually gets better by itself or is easily treated. If you are dizzy often, you should see your health care provider to find the cause.

NIH: National Institutes of Health

  • Benign positional vertigo (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Benign positional vertigo -- aftercare (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Dizziness (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Dizziness and vertigo -- aftercare (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Electronystagmography (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Epley maneuver (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Labyrinthitis (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Vertigo-associated disorders (Medical Encyclopedia)


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Ear Disorders

Your ear has three main parts: outer, middle and inner. You use all of them in hearing. Sound waves come in through your outer ear. They reach your middle ear, where they make your eardrum vibrate. The vibrations are transmitted through three tiny bones, called ossicles, in your middle ear. The vibrations travel to your inner ear, a snail-shaped organ. The inner ear makes the nerve impulses that are sent to the brain. Your brain recognizes them as sounds. The inner ear also controls balance.

A variety of conditions may affect your hearing or balance:

  • Ear infections are the most common illness in infants and young children.
  • Tinnitus, a roaring in your ears, can be the result of loud noises, medicines or a variety of other causes.
  • Meniere's disease may be the result of fluid problems in your inner ear; its symptoms include tinnitus and dizziness.
  • Ear barotrauma is an injury to your ear because of changes in barometric (air) or water pressure.

Some ear disorders can result in hearing disorders and deafness.

  • Aural polyps (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Benign ear cyst or tumor (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Ear discharge (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Ear emergencies (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Ear examination (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Earache (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Eardrum repair (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Otosclerosis (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Ruptured eardrum (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Tympanometry (Medical Encyclopedia)
  • Wax blockage (Medical Encyclopedia)


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