All You Need to Know About Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)

Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo BPPV is a condition that causes momentary attacks of vertigo in its sufferers. The condition also goes by the name Benign Vertigo and Positional Vertigo. Peoples of all ages can get BPPV but the people who are most susceptible to getting the condition are those above 50 years old.


The Causes of BPPV

The reasons behind a person getting BPPV include:

  • Ageing
  • Getting a head injury
  • Getting a serious viral infection or cold.
  • Using Ototoxic medications like gentamicin.
  • Experiencing a minor stroke.


The symptoms of the conditions such as nausea, dizziness and vomiting are caused by the build-up of calcium carbonate deposits in the inner ear. The chief cause of the condition in young people is either head trauma or whiplash.


Amongst people over fifty the cause often happens to be the deterioration of the vestibular system present in the inner ear. The older one gets, the higher chances are of getting BPPV. It must be mentioned, however, that half of all BPPV conditions occur without any identifiable reason. Such cases are termed idiopathic.



BPPV diagnosis is done by a chiropractor who will perform a neurological and physical examination. He/she will also take a full case history. The chiropractor will also perform a number of tests whose purpose will be to distinguish one type of BPPV from another.


The diagnostic process usually involves placing the patient in different positions in order to monitor the ones that trigger symptoms. This procedure enables the chiropractor to isolate the kind of BPPV it is given a particular type will be identified by certain head movements that trigger it. A common indicator is uncontrolled eye movements.



A common treatment for BPPV is called the Semont or Epley manoeuvre. It involves placing the patient in a number of positions designed to use gravity to direct the calcium into a pocket in the inner ear where they’ll cease to be problematic. Another way to treat the condition is to undergo the Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT) which is a viable form of treatment.


Nevertheless, it might require the patient to take up a follow-up course of treatment in the event symptoms reappear. An effort on the patient’s part to avoid salt and caffeinated drinks will help to expedite the healing process after treatment. Cutting down on such drinks has been seen to reduce the amount of calcium carbonate crystals that accumulate in the inner ear.


The Disadvantage of Drugs

BPPV can be treated using drugs such as Stemetil and Compazine. This drug is a sedative and should you be prepared to use it then you should also brace yourself for the accompanying side-effects.


One of them will be a feeling of tiredness which will make you incapable of operating heavy machinery. Visiting a chiropractor on the other hand will leave you cured and at ease.

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