Simple treatment for vertigo at home

Published on July 13, 2004 at 7:24 AM · 24 Comments

People with vertigo can get relief by doing maneuvers at home, according to a study published in the July 13 issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

The study involved people with benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, an inner ear problem that causes a feeling of spinning or whirling when you move your head into certain positions. The vertigo usually lasts less than a minute. It can be mild or severe enough to cause nausea. It affects an estimated 64 people in every 100,000.

This type of vertigo is believed to be caused by loose particles floating in the inner ear canal, which maintains the body's equilibrium. Certain head and body movements can clear the particles from the ear canal. In general, the maneuvers are performed by a doctor or therapist.

"For most people, one treatment is all it takes to stop the vertigo," said study author Andrea Radtke, MD, a neurologist with Charité Campus Virchow Clinic in Berlin, Germany. "But some people need repeated treatments before it resolves completely. For these people, it would be beneficial to have the option to treat themselves at home."

The study involved 70 people who had experienced vertigo for an average of eight weeks. The study tested two different maneuvers. Both of the maneuvers involve head and body movements performed while sitting on a bed. Half of the people performed one maneuver and half performed the other. They received instructions for the maneuver and performed it once with the doctor. Then they performed the exercise three times a day at home until the vertigo had stopped for at least 24 hours.

After one week, 95 percent of those who performed the maneuver called the modified Epley's procedure had no more symptoms. Of those performing the modified Semont maneuver, 58 percent had no more symptoms.

The researchers recommend the modified Epley's procedure for people who do not get relief after a first treatment by a doctor or therapist or for people whose vertigo recurs frequently.

"People who are experiencing vertigo for the first time should still go see their doctor to make sure the vertigo doesn't have another cause, such as a disease or the side effect from a medication," said neurologist Joseph M. Furman, MD, PhD, of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in Pittsburgh, Pa., who wrote an editorial accompanying the study. "But home treatment will be especially valuable for people who have frequent recurrences of benign vertigo, which can happen to about 50 percent of people over a four- or five-year period."

Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo is most common in people over the age of 50, and it occurs in women twice as often as in men. The average age of these study participants was 60, and 60 of the 70 participants were women.

Posted in: Medical Condition News

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Comments
  1. James Tabeling James Tabeling United States says:

    My Wife has had Vertigo for a couple days similar to what I had years ago. I would like the drawing of a person sitting on the bed and performing the exercises.

  2. Miss Blume Miss Blume Australia says:

    Help please I am desperate. I get vertigo bad , so bad I throw up and can not stand on my feet for hours until it passes. When it does pass I am left feeling unwell and off balance for a day or so. Please help me this is really bad. I am in my late 30's . PLEASE post the instructions for the Modified Epleys and some diagrams too PLEASE.

    • Corralie Schmidt Corralie Schmidt Australia says:

      Hello my name is Corral....I have had Vertigo for 12 months now , when i first started with vertigo i use to have a turn every 2 days. i had to have a Lyric put in my left ear as i had 20% hearing in one ear and 80% in the other .... it has helped but not completley....i still have attackes every so often its made me feeling neasea most days ....so i have to take Maxolon tablets...

  3. Brandy Aiken Brandy Aiken United States says:

    My husband has been diagnosed with vertigo and has been to the hospital twice this week it was so bad. What are things we can do at home to relieve some of his symptoms,and it there anything we can do to prevent them? Is there a definate cause to vertigo?

  4. Miss Blume Miss Blume Australia says:

    Brandy I have heard from many others that like myself it first ever came on after previously having an MRI. Coincidence or not I think there is something in that.

  5. Ell Ell Australia says:

    I too suffer with vertigo. I would really love the to know exercise. I am hoping and praying it helps me as well.

  6. Sunita Sunita India says:

    My uncle suffers from vertigo.  It would be helpful to do some of the exercises mentioned in your article.  Can you help with the instruction for these or possibly some drawings.  Thanks.

  7. Thiyagarajan Thiyagarajan U.A.E. says:

    My wife is having  vertigo issues,

    please let us know the exercise to be followed

    Thiyagarajan

  8. mangesh vartak mangesh vartak India says:

    i am facing vertigo problem from last 02 weeks,if i bend my head is roming, please help me........Thks

  9. June June South Africa says:

    Good day, i have been suffering van vertigo for the last 2 weeks. I also want to do the exercises, please help.

  10. Michael Michael Canada says:

    I would like to have the pictures for the vertigo treatment,also

  11. Harold Harold South Africa says:

    Please can you also supply me with the exercises

  12. Sonya Sonya Australia says:

    Hi to all I had vertigo bad but my doctors did not pick it up right away. I had CT scans blood test etc nothin showed till I told the doctor let me show you so I layed down to one side and the doctor said he has never seen it so obvious but that I must bring it on to get rid of it this is what I did it was not easy in the early stages as I would feel so sick but a must to cope with and do now let me try to explain.
    You must sit up on the edge of your bed tip your body to one side stay in that position till the spinning feeling goes sit back to the center and wait till the spinning felling goes repeat on the next side and so on repeat several times at least three times a day you will start to feel relief soon and if it re occurs repeat at the first sign. I hope I have helped some of you. I am a patient like you and am writing from experience but please speak to your doctor

  13. Rajan Chavan Rajan Chavan India says:

    Sir,i am having ear problem from last 3 yrs. my age is 52 yrs
    i have started this vertigo problem from a week ago, can you
    pls suggest me home exercise on these.

  14. Hussain Hussain New Zealand says:

    Till about 3 months back I was fit, would go gym 5 times a week. 23 August 2012 while working in office I had vertigo attack out of no where. It lasted for 10-15 minutes. It was frightening. After all check ups I was diagnosed BPPV. I had spinning sensation for about a week and right after that spinning started going away but dizziness,tiredness,light headedness would never go not even for a second and i haven't got any relief from it. I feel sleepy all the time. I have had betahestine for about 9 weeks and neck/head exercises but nothing helps. My MRI was normal.
    Can you please help.

    Cheers

  15. peter black peter black Australia says:

    Ive had vertigo for 5 weeks now,Ive been in hospital three times now.i just pass out for a few seconds then,it feels like the hole world is spinning.it goes for 2 to three days then it comes back i've tried exercises but they dont seem to help me...thank you....please help me as this is very upsetting.....

  16. flora goldman flora goldman United States says:

    please send me some instructions. My vertigo is getting worse and I can't stand it.  someone told me about sitting remedies and another about stnding.  whatever you can give me I will try, believe me at 90 years, I don't need more problems.   thank you

  17. Jennifer Berven Jennifer Berven United States says:

    I have vertigo.. and was diagnosed with Meniere's.. if you have trouble hearing in one ear or it feels "full" and have tinnitus in that ear (and it gets louder as the vertigo progresses) that might be it.  oddly I found relief for years from a diuretic.  Been having some re-occurrence lately.. hopefully it will subside again.

  18. Jennifer Berven Jennifer Berven United States says:

    If the link does not show up.. google.. modified Epley procedure..  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZzuuymO2Avw

  19. Corralie Schmidt Corralie Schmidt Australia says:

    I have suffered Vertigo for 12 months now ..when it first started i had  attackes evey 2 days ... ended up in hospital as i was so sick... they did blood tests , mri scan hearing tests and found out i had 20% hearing in one ear and 80% in the other ear so i was off balance, i was put on medication for about 8 months , SERC and MAXOLON , plus i had to have a LYRIC inserted into my left ear that had 20% hearing , i am a lot better but still not 100% . i still have an attack about once a week and feel neasea most of the time ...its the worst thing i have ever had to deal with ....

  20. zinaa ali zinaa ali Iraq says:

    Hi, I suffer from vertigo a lot.. please suggest some excercises for vertigo. thanks

  21. BD Page BD Page United States says:

    I have Vertigo really bad, Ive had this episode since Jan 14,2014, Im taking Meclizine  but it does not appear to be working this time. I am a female and 63 yrs old, my doctor who is an ENT specialist has performed all types of test and they come out good, that is nothing that suggest there is a medical reason  to why I get  Vertigo.  Please help I live in the Chicago area and Im desperate for relief. Thanks BP

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News-Medical.Net.
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