We read with interest the article by Hain et al1 on the intriguing phenomenon of mal de debarquement (MDD), or sickness of disembarkment. They described 27 subjects with persistent MDD, a pathological condition that was first reported by Brown and Baloh2 in 1987. The pathogenesis of persistent MDD is unclear, and the clinical presentation is still not well defined.2-4 This lack of clarity contrasts with the well-defined, more common physiological condition of MDD, a transient sensation of swaying, swinging, unsteadiness, and disequilibrium that occurs in some individuals after disembarkment, and is usually explained in terms of multisensorimotor adaptation and habituation to an abnormal motion environment.5-8
Gordon CR, Shupak A, Nachum Z. Mal de Debarquement. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2000;126(6):805. doi:
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: