Understanding Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)

What is BPPV?

  • Definition: BPPV is a disorder causing sudden and brief episodes of vertigo triggered by specific head and body movements. This can cause nausea and vomiting.
  • Cause: Dislodged calcium crystals move through the inner ear’s semicircular canals and stimulate fluid motion, sending confusing signals to the brain which cause episodes of vertigo.


  • Vertigo: A spinning sensation often triggered by changes in head position.
  • Nystagmus: Involuntary eye movements accompanying vertigo.
  • Imbalance: Difficulty walking, standing, or performing daily activities.


  • Dix-Hallpike Test: The gold standard diagnostic maneuver involving specific head and body movements to provoke vertigo.
  • Audiology Evaluation: Assess hearing health to rule out other conditions.


  • Canalith Repositioning Procedure (CRP): Repositions dislodged crystals to alleviate symptoms.
  • Brandt-Daroff exercises: Home exercise program to trigger and treat BPPV.

Long-Term Outlook

  • Recurrence: BPPV may return but can be managed with appropriate treatment guided by a competent healthcare professional.

BPPV, though unsettling, is manageable with accurate diagnosis and effective treatment. By understanding its nature and seeking professional guidance, individuals can regain their balance, reduce symptoms, and continue enjoying life’s auditory and physical experiences.

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