What does a positive finding of head-shake nystagmus on electronystagmography (ENG) suggest?

Updated: Aug 06, 2019
  • Author: Angela G Shoup, PhD; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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A positive finding of head-shake nystagmus is highly suggestive of an underlying vestibular pathology. A negative head-shake nystagmus test result does not rule out a vestibular pathology. Head-shake nystagmus usually beats away from the side of a peripheral lesion; however, because this is not the rule, head-shake nystagmus should be used in conjunction with other vestibular tests in determining the side of the lesion.

Cross-coupled head-shake nystagmus is suggestive of CNS pathology.

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