Sinus headache eye: Diagnosed With Sinus Headaches? It Could Be Your Vision

Diagnosed With Sinus Headaches? It Could Be Your Vision

Many people who think they have sinus headaches—characterized by pain, pressure around the eye area, cheeks, or forehead—actually have binocular vision dysfunction (BVD), a misalignment of the eyes.

Anything that prevents our eyes from focusing properly—especially eye muscle strain—can produce headaches, dizziness, blurred vision and reading difficulties.

If you’ve tried headache treatments without success, it may be time to book a consultation with a neuro-optometrist.

Binocular Vision Dysfunction (BVD)

The extraocular muscles enable the eyes to look up, down and side to side. They control the eyes by responding to brain signals and focus both eyes in the same direction. Fusion—when eyes are perfectly aligned—allows both eyes to send one clear, single image to the brain.

Binocular vision dysfunction (BVD) occurs when the eyes are misaligned. This misalignment doesn’t allow the brain to fuse the two different images the eyes are sending into one clear image. This often results in double vision or eye strain. This misalignment of the eyes can also lead to vertigo, headaches, and even what may appear to be sinus headaches.

Vertical Heterophoria

Vertical heterophoria, the most prevalent type of BVD, is a condition where the eyes aren’t aligned vertically. For some, one eye may be physically higher than the other. Extraocular muscles in the eyes of VH patients can get overused as they attempt to align the eyes (fusion) and avoid double vision. The overworked muscles get tired and stressed over time, resulting in VH symptoms, such as temple pain, lightheadedness, blurred vision, headaches, and dizziness.

VH patients may experience other symptoms, including:

Pain – Headaches, particularly around the eyes, the forehead, the temples, and the sinuses (may feels similar to a sinus headache). Pain may also occur while moving your eyes, neck and upper back, and when turning your head.

Visual symptoms – Sensitivity to glare or light; shadowed or overlapping vision.

Reading problems – Problems with reading comprehension, losing one’s place while reading, words jumping on the page, difficulty concentrating on text. When these symptoms are found in children they are sometimes misdiagnosed as ADD/ADHD.

Vestibular symptoms – Motion sickness, nausea, poor depth perception, drifting to one side when walking.

Psychological symptoms – Anxiety in high-ceilinged venues, such as big-box stores or shopping malls; feeling worried or overwhelmed in a large crowd. These signs and symptoms may be confused with [generalized] anxiety disorder or agoraphobia.

Treatment for BVD

To treat BVD, your eye doctor will perform a neurovisual exam that will specifically look for slight visual misalignments associated with BVD. If a misalignment is detected, your eye doctor will prescribe prisms to be added to the lenses of your glasses.

Prismatic glasses adjust the two images perceived by the eyes, allowing fusion to occur without overworking the extraocular muscles. This should considerably reduce blurred vision, dizziness, headaches and associated symptoms.

At Developmental Vision Center our eye doctors have been diagnosing, treating and improving the lives of our patients for years. We provide a wide range of services to ensure visual comfort, including custom prismatic glasses and multifocal contact lenses. Schedule a comprehensive eye exam with Developmental Vision Center and say goodbye to your ‘sinus’ headaches forever.

Developmental Vision Center serves patients from Oswego, Naperville, Aurora, and Chicago, all throughout Illinois.

Book An AppointmentCall Us 630-394-6252

When Sinus Headaches Are More Than What They Seem

Human sight is possible because of an incredibly complex system of interacting parts working together to form one of our most remarkable senses. Sometimes, however, certain parts of this intricate system can become out of balance, causing a shift in the alignment of the eyes that results in strained eye muscles. When this happens, certain symptoms can appear, such as blurred or double vision, headaches and dizziness – just to name a few. Sometimes people with headache symptoms mistakenly believe they have sinus headaches, when what they really have is a binocular vision problem.

What Causes Binocular Vision Dysfunction?

The eyes are controlled by the extraocular muscles – the muscles which enable our eyes to move up, down and all around. These muscles are directed by signals from the brain, which controls the eyes and directs them to focus the images the eyes see individually into one clear image. Binocular Vision Dysfunction (BVD) occurs when the eyes move out of alignment with each other, making it impossible for them to form focused images. As a result of this misalignment, the eye muscles become sore and stressed as the brain works to correct this problem, leading to the previously mentioned symptoms of headaches, dizziness and blurred vision, among other things. The most common type of this condition is known as Vertical Heterophoria (VH).

How Symptoms of VH Can Be Mistaken for Sinus Headaches

When the eyes are no longer aligned vertically, the brain forces the extraocular muscles to work overtime to correct this problem in an effort to avoid double vision. The longer the muscles are compelled to do this, the more fatigued and overworked they become, at which point the symptoms of VH start to come to the forefront. The overworked eye muscles cause head pain, which can be focused around the eyes, sinuses, forehead and temples. This pain is very similar to that felt with a sinus infection or headache, which is why many patients who unknowingly have VH are misdiagnosed as having chronic sinus headaches.

Additional Symptoms of Vertical Heterophoria

Binocular vision disorders like VH can cause a number of other issues, including:

  • Light sensitivity.

  • Reading difficulties.

  • Motion sickness, nausea and poor depth perception.

  • Anxiety when in a crowd or in large, open buildings with high ceilings.

At Vision Specialists of Michigan, our doctors address the vision-related symptoms of BVD and VH with a unique treatment method: micro-prism lenses. These lenses work to align the images seen by the eyes, so the extraocular muscles don’t have to strain to do so.

Make an Appointment Today

If you’ve seen multiple doctors and tried various treatments for your sinus headaches without receiving relief, the problem may not be your sinuses at all. It could be your eyes! To find out if you may be able to bid farewell to your headaches forever, you need to give Vision Specialists of Michigan a call at (208) 504-2900 or complete our BVD questionnaire.

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Vegetovascular dystonia – what is it, symptoms and treatment of VVD

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Vegetovascular dystonia

The work of the internal organs, glands and blood vessels is controlled by the autonomic nervous system. It does not obey the will of a person, therefore it is impossible to speed up the heartbeat or increase blood pressure by the power of thought. If the function of the autonomic nervous system is disturbed, a characteristic complex of symptoms occurs, which is called vegetovascular dystonia. Not all doctors recognize this disease, but many people cannot do without special treatment.

What is VVD

Vegetovascular dystonia (VVD), or neurocirculatory syndrome, is a functional disorder of the autonomic nervous system, in which a complex of symptoms appear that are not characteristic of a particular disease. Examination of patients with suspected VVD most often does not reveal changes in the structure of internal organs, but may show deviations in their function at the borderline of the norm.

Autonomic dysfunction cannot be called a complete disease, this diagnosis is not included in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10). But therapists, cardiologists and neurologists continue to make this diagnosis in patients in whom the examination did not reveal any disorders, and complaints of poor health continue.

It is believed that manifestations of pathology arise due to violations of the coordination of the work of two structures of the autonomic nervous system. It consists of the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems, which differ in their effect on the body. The sympathetic activator is the hormone adrenaline, so it performs the following functions:

  • increases the number of heartbeats;
  • raises blood pressure;
  • stimulates the release of glucose into the blood;
  • dilates the arteries of the brain, lungs and heart;
  • reduces salivation;
  • inhibits peristalsis of the digestive tract;
  • expands the bronchi and enhances gas exchange;
  • enlarges pupils;
  • causes spasm of the sphincters of the bladder, digestive tract.

These reactions are necessary to protect the body in a dangerous situation, to activate it to flee. The parasympathetic nervous system works in the opposite direction. It reduces pressure, accelerates peristalsis of the intestines, urinary organs, constricts the pupils and bronchi. The parasympathetic activator is acetylcholine. It slows down the heartbeat, reduces the concentration of glucose in the blood and relaxes all the sphincters in the body.

Autonomic dystonia occurs when the sympathetic or parasympathetic is activated spontaneously, for no apparent reason. Therefore, a person suddenly in a state of rest has an increased heartbeat, pressure rises and anxiety worries.

But often vegetovascular dystonia is a precursor of serious diseases. Having arisen at a young age without treatment, after a few years it leads to the formation of arterial hypertension, heart disease, digestive tract and hormonal disorders.

Causes and symptoms of VVD

Adolescents and women are at risk for developing vascular dystonia. In men, VVD rarely occurs as an independent syndrome, usually dystonia is associated with other diseases. The causes of pathology are most often unknown, but its appearance is associated with the following provoking factors:

  • stress – constant nervous tension causes the release of stress hormones that stimulate the autonomic nervous system;
  • hormonal changes – physiologically in women during the menstrual cycle, with the onset of pregnancy, menopause, the concentration of sex steroids changes, which indirectly affect the functioning of the nervous system;
  • maturation of the nervous system – in adolescents leads to pronounced signs of VVD;
  • bad habits – smoking, drinking alcohol, caffeinated drinks cause disturbances in the functioning of blood vessels and the conduction of nerve impulses.

The first symptoms of autonomic dystonia may appear already in childhood. They are associated with heredity and characteristics of the course of pregnancy. If the expectant mother suffers from vegetovascular dystonia, smokes, she is diagnosed with arterial hypertension, then the risk of pathology in the child increases significantly. The health of the baby is negatively affected by intrauterine hypoxia, impaired feto-placental blood flow, as well as the stress experienced by the pregnant woman. Acute fetal hypoxia during childbirth can also lead to the formation of VVD at an early age.

Formation of vegetovascular dystonia in adults can be associated with osteochondrosis, head injuries, malnutrition. Long life in poor environmental conditions, work in hazardous industries also leads to VSD. Weather-dependent people also often experience dystonia.

Symptoms of autonomic dysfunction are varied, doctors identify more than 40 signs of the disease, but not all of them occur in one patient. This is usually a combination of 4-5 permanent symptoms and a few additional ones. Depending on the manifestations of the cardiovascular system, there are three types of vegetovascular dystonia:

  • cardiac – not accompanied by pressure surges, it is characterized by pain in the heart area or interruptions in its work;
  • hypertensive type – a person suffers from high blood pressure, which is accompanied by panic attacks, chills, increased physical activity;
  • hypotensive type – characterized by low blood pressure, which is kept at the level of 100/50-90/45 mm Hg. Additionally worried about weakness, drowsiness, dizziness.

Signs of dystonia include intermittent shortness of breath, a feeling of shortness of breath, or a sensation of spasm in the throat. Many complain to the doctor about pain in the heart, a feeling of increased heartbeat, pressure in the chest, interruptions in the work of the heart, but it is rarely possible to fix them with an ECG. Symptoms of autonomic dysfunction include decreased appetite, heartburn, flatulence, and other digestive disorders. The disease manifests itself in the form of frequent urination or urinary retention, chills and cold extremities, excessive sweating. Many complain of weather sensitivity, sleep disturbances, mood swings and irritability. In women with VVD, the menstrual cycle may go astray, or symptoms of premenstrual syndrome appear 1-2 weeks before menstruation.

The severity of signs of vegetovascular dystonia may vary. Depending on the frequency of symptoms, the following types of the disease are distinguished:

  • paroxysmal – attacks of vegetative-vascular dystonia appear periodically;
  • permanent – the symptoms of dystonia are constant, usually mild, but may be aggravated under the influence of provoking factors;
  • mixed – includes features of the two previous types;
  • latent type – signs of the disease appear only after severe stress, the rest of the time the symptoms do not bother.

Vegetovascular dystonia with a long course without treatment can lead to disturbances in the work of the heart. People who are overweight, malnourished and suffer from physical inactivity increase the risk of developing coronary heart disease and hypertension. In women, VVD at the age of 45-50 aggravates the course of menopause.

Diagnostic methods

Vegetovascular dystonia is an exception diagnosis. This means that it is put after a complete examination of the cardiovascular, nervous system, if they did not find any abnormalities in their work.

For diagnosis, you need to contact a general practitioner who, if necessary, will refer you to a cardiologist, neurologist or endocrinologist. In order for the doctor to be able to accurately diagnose, it is necessary to accurately describe the symptoms, the time of their appearance. The therapist will definitely clarify whether the patient drinks alcohol, nicotine, how often he drinks coffee and what daily routine he adheres to. These data are necessary to correctly formulate recommendations for the treatment of the disease.

The following methods are used to diagnose vegetovascular dystonia:

  • laboratory diagnostics – general blood and urine analysis without specific changes, lipid ratio may be disturbed in the biochemical analysis;
  • blood test for hormones – a study of thyroid hormones is indicative, with their increase, tachycardia, weight loss can be observed;
  • ECG – changes are not typical for VVD, sometimes it is possible to fix tachycardia, single extrasystoles, but there are no signs of severe conduction disturbance in the heart;
  • EEG – an electroencephalogram can reveal small deviations in the conduction of impulses in the brain;
  • Ultrasound of the internal organs – an examination of the abdominal cavity with complaints of indigestion, a study of the heart, kidneys, and pelvic organs in women.

Nervous system dysfunction is not accompanied by damage to internal organs, most of the indicators are at the borderline of the norm, despite complaints of poor health.

Treatment of vegetovascular dystonia

The doctor chooses how to treat VVD on an individual basis. They begin with non-drug therapy and the elimination of factors that provoke deterioration. It is recommended to observe the daily routine, go to bed no later than 23 hours, and before going to bed, stop watching TV and using electronic gadgets.

Special diet helps. Regardless of the form of dystonia, coffee, energy drinks, alcohol are excluded from the diet, and they stop smoking. If there is a tendency to high blood pressure, limit the amount of salt consumed, adhere to a diet low in fat. With a tendency to be overweight, use means for losing weight.

Panic attacks and anxiety can be treated with herbal sedatives. The doctor may recommend herbal teas from chamomile, mint, and for high blood pressure – cranberries and bearberries.

Helps physiotherapy that calms, affects vascular tone, regulates the nervous system. It is recommended to go to electrosleep, take a course of coniferous-salt and radon baths, visit a pressure chamber, cryosauna, just swim in the pool or sign up for a contrast shower.

In order to treat VSD with drugs, it is necessary to make sure that other methods have not been effective. The doctor selects drug therapy with caution. These can be antipsychotics, high blood pressure pills, vitamin and tonic drugs.

Vegetovascular dystonia can be controlled and restrained if it is charged with a good mood, avoiding stress and evenly distributing the load throughout the day. Sleep patterns, proper nutrition and sensible exercise will benefit your body.

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Questions and answers

anonymous (Female, 39 years old),

Smad interpretation lifting hell,up to 150 / 90 as much as possible. Headaches, flies before the eyes. Rapid heartbeat.

anonymous (Female, 67),

How to reduce your risk of blood clots

Age 67 years. Experiencing unconfirmed COVID in November 2020. In January 2021, RFMK = 7.5 mg/100 ml. Prescribed Eliquis at a dosage of 2.5 mg x 2p per day…

anonymous (Female, 86 years old),

Pressure drops

Grandmother, 86 years old. Pressure drops from 190/70 to 90/50. Weight 60 kg. Lives in a remote village, you can’t get to the doctor. But they persuaded and brought. Prescribed – cardiomagnyl, edarbi in the morning 1 tab, …

anonymous (Man, 23),


Were (PA developed into everyday stress and anxiety) I was referred to a psychotherapist, he prescribed me Azafen, phenazepam, picamilon. But before taking the course, I had an ECG…

anonymous (Female, 68 years old),

Cardiomagnyl replacement for problems with the gastrointestinal tract

Hello! Please tell me. I am seeing a cardiologist, diagnosed with arterial hypertension. (Conclusion attached). Among the prescribed drugs is cardiomagnyl, she took it. But now she turned to a gastroenterologist with signs of erosive gastritis of the stomach. The gastroenterologist said…

anonymous (Female, 70),

Pulse 33

Hello. My mother, 70 years old, periodically drops her pulse to 35-33, she feels very bad, she says she feels sick and cold, she always wants to sleep, sugar is 13, she is type 2 diabetic, she drinks Xarelto, Siofor, …

anonymous (Man, 46 years old),

High blood pressure

Good evening, I wanted to ask you, I had an acute respiratory infection for three days, I was in bed, I had to take tests, I walked around the hospital. Returning home, I tried on the pressure of 140 to 90 although mine is 110…

anonymous (Male, 32 years old),

Pulse at rest and during sleep

I have been playing hockey for about a year, once a week, recently I began to notice that my resting heart rate is below 60 Beats / min, in a dream below 40, once, fixed the Clock, for an hour. What is this…

anonymous (Female, 22 years old),

PMC 1st with regurgitation of the 1st degree , was (3-4mm), repeated ultrasound a week ago, the same thing, only (4.5mm), tell me I have an anxiety disorder, constant tachycardia, …

anonymous (Male, 31 years old),

Av blockade 2nd degree Mobitz 1

Good afternoon, I am constantly haunted by panic attacks, there is a diagnosis of an anxiety disorder (all somatics are directed one way or another to the heart). From time to time I do echo, ecg, holter, everything was fine all the time …

anonymous (Female, 85 years old),

Breaks when measuring blood pressure with a mechanical tonometer

Hello. My mother is 85 years old. In 2019, a pacemaker was installed for 2nd degree AV block. About 2 months ago, when measuring blood pressure, I began to hear breaks. For example…

anonymous (Female, 17 years old),

Strong palpitations what to do

Lately I have often had tachycardia attacks, anaprilin helps. The pressure rises to 135/93 and the pulse to 150, the fear of death or even the fear of going crazy, shaking both inside and …

anonymous (Male, 38),

High blood pressure

hello. Please tell me it’s normal that the pressure measurement when I’m sitting is 150/120, and when I lie down at the same moment, when I measure it again, it shows 120/90. If I get up again, then again …

anonymous (Male, 66 years old),

The possibility of taking Eliquis for a man who underwent heart surgery

Good afternoon, tell me please))) my dad suffered two years ago heart valve replacement surgery, and aortic surgery. Now he is ill with Coronavirus, can he take Eliquis? It itself is very thick …

anonymous (Female, 35),


Dear doctors! Please tell me, for a year, anxiety and phobia of death from the heart due to physical symptoms; burning and heaviness in the sternum, dizziness, tachycardia and tremors in the sternum. But…

anonymous (Male, 82 years old),

Intestinal bleeding due to Pradaksa

Father, 82 years old, had several MIs, the last one in July 2021, at the same time they had OA stenting. Atrial fibrillation (paroxysmal form). Before this heart attack, he took warfarin, in the hospital heparin and aspirin were added, with …

anonymous (Female, 30 years old),


Hello! , then it is restored and I fall asleep. I drink only beer from alcohol…

Ruslan Shulga (Male, 22 years old),

High cholesterol

Hello, I have had panic attacks for 7 years, sometimes with a rise in blood pressure up to 200 during a terrible panic attack , and sometimes drops to 110 over 40. In June, the heart was examined, all …

anonymous (Female, 52),

Aspirin for secondary stroke prevention

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anonymous (Female, 26 years old),

How to train the heart

Hello! Tell me how you can train the heart so that the pulse does not jump like that when walking? I do ultrasound and holter every year, I will attach it here again. Sometimes I take Coraxan 2.5-5 mg only if necessary. By…

anonymous (Female, 16 years old),

Tachycardia attack

Sinus tachycardia and extrasystoles have been present since 2016, Concor was prescribed in 2019, after which everything returned to normal, but a new problem appeared, it began to seem to me that my pulse is going through the roof, although before that…

anonymous (Male, 17 years old),


Good afternoon! A young man, 17, showed “s-m wpw” twice on the ECG, on the last ECG with tachycardia, he was sent for holter. We got the result: “During the day, the basic rhythm is sinus with a tendency to tachycardia …

anonymous (Female, 25 years old),

EOS deviation to the right difficulty in breathing

Hello, I had a routine medical examination, an ECG. The doctor said that the ECG deviations are functional and not terrible, but the pulse speeds up, she listened to the heart and prescribed an ECHO. So far, it is not possible to get to the echo …

anonymously (woman, 26 years old),

Help to figure out


already avoided all doctors, tormented by extrasystole, strokes of strong ones catching breathing, following panic tachycardia and small interruptions , checked the thyroid gland, complete blood count, ferritin iron, ultrasound of the heart, everything is normal, the holter did and to the doctor …

anonymous (Female, 18),


Hello! I am 18 years old. Today I had an ECHOCG .. Since recently I have been suffering from tachycardia, it began after suffering a covid. Doctors say it’s either post-COVID or VVD. So..echokg CONCLUSION: Echographic cameras…

Pavel Shtarklev (Male, 33 years old),

AV blockade

Good afternoon! Man, 33 years old, height 187, weight 110. Obesity of the 1st degree. In 2015, due to chest pains (the cause was in the spine) and an anxiety disorder (against the background of pain) …

anonymous (Female, 43),


Hello, in October 2021 I had RFA of the pulmonary arteries, a month later RFA AVURT. Three months later, Holter showed an average pulse of 86, on the ECG 90 and AV blockade of the 1st degree. …

anonymous (Woman, 70 years old),


frequent extrasystoles with a critical course of hypertension 200/100. It was not possible to pass Holter, during Covid an ECG and an ultrasound of the heart were passed, during which accidentally …

anonymous (Female, 45),

Increased heart rate after taking con-cork

Hello doctor. Two months ago the cardiogram showed malnutrition in my heart. ECHO also did, but everything was fine there. They said it was probably due to stress. Blood pressure during the month 6-7…

anonymous (Woman, 32 years old),

Tachycardia chest pain during pregnancy

Good afternoon! Woman, 32 years old, height 178, weight 62 .Pregnant , term 11 weeks. All services passed, everything is normal, Ultrasound of the heart was done 3 months ago, only PMK 1 tbsp., I did an ecg a week ago, everything is normal. This morning I left the house …

anonymous (Male, 31 years old),

Tachycardia due to IBS and hypogonadism

Good afternoon. I suffer from tachycardia as soon as the intestines begin to boil. It began after a neurological breakdown against the background of an orchiectomy on one side. testerone dropped to 9. Now it is up to 30 on hcg and menopause.…

anonymous (Woman, 39 years old),

Disability registration

Good day, my brother, 59 years old, was decapitated in the hospital, they said the consequences covid. Have you been diagnosed with a heart defect, can you apply for disability? They were sent home to die.

anonymous (Male, 56),

Low blood pressure during treatment after stenting

Good afternoon. He entered the center of vascular surgery with a diagnosis of coronary artery disease. ACS with ST segment elevation. Coronary angiography. Recanalization. BAP and PNA stenting. After discharge and taking 5 mg of enalapril, the pressure dropped below …

Anton Neskin (Male, 26 years old),

Heart problems

Hello. I suffered from constant shortness of breath. Especially when I lie on my back. On my back, I generally start to choke. What to do about it?) There are no doctors in our city. I am only 26 years old. In 2015…

anonymous (Female, 21 years old),

Shortness of breath worries my heart tingling in the heart, shortness of breath just through the nose, I can’t completely . ..

anonymous (Male, 35 years old),

Betaloc and ED

Hello. I underwent a medical examination at work and when I went to the therapist, the pressure rose to a value of 170/90 and he prescribed me Betalok and Perinev. After a week of taking these drugs, I started…

Tina Shamina (Female, 37 years old),

Is it worth continuing to take monosan valsartan indapamide mV and specifically cor if blood pressure drops to indicators 90 60 s 120 80

Grandma is 90 years old. Diagnosed with angina pectoris. Monosan, thrombo ass, valsartan, indapamide MV and concor cor were prescribed on a permanent basis. The diagnosis of covid has now been confirmed. Areplivir, cefixime and fluimmucil were prescribed, and…

anonymous (Female, 35 years old),

Incomplete PNPG block and anesthesia

Good afternoon.