Question about Head Nerves.

How close does the cochlear vestibular nerve come to the optic nerve? Is there any way disease or trauma could cause interference between the two?

'cause, y’know. I’m just curious is all.

I’m not certain that I understand your question, but I’ll give it a shot.

There are, indeed, (indirect) connections between the vestibular (balance) system of the brain and the eyes. That’s how, for example, our eyes stay fixed on something even when we’re moving about. The last paragraph of this short article gives a very brief account of one aspect of the system.

By and large, the parts of the brain responsible for the coordination between balance and eye movements are located in what’s called the brainstem, as well as the cerebellum. These are areas that can be affected by things like multiple sclerosis, strokes, certain metabolic and/or toxic syndromes, among many others.

Is this helpful? Is there something more specific you were wondering about?

Since a picture is worth a google of words: All the cranial nerves

Optic nerve placement
vestibulocochlear nerve placement
The second two should tell you exactly what you need.

I am undone! You have seen through my thinly veiled plot for world domination! Curses! CURSES I Say! Um, more specifically, yes. 2 somethings in fact.

First, under what conditions could eye movement or visual stimulus (two wildly different things, I know) create an auditory sensation. Are trauma or illness two possible causes?

Second, where would such a sensation originate? Would it necessarily be within the brain itself–say as an hallucination? Or could it be possible for signals to hop from one nerve to another at a point of injury?

Eye movements can produce spontaneous flashes of light (called photopsia) when there’s inflammation of the optic nerve. Photopsia occurs essentially spontaneously in migraine, retinal detachment, and other conditions affecting the fluid or lining of the eyeball.

In terms of eye movements or visual stimuli provoking auditory phenomena, I’m not sure. Perhaps you’re thinking of synesthesia?

One fascinating syndrome, and possibly relevant to what you’re getting at, has to do with withdrawal of drugs like Effexor. People who stop cold turkey sometimes get bizarre electrical shock feelings or report seeing flashes of light.

How about the reverse? Loud sounds provoking visual disturbances?