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Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

BPPV is an inner ear condition. BPPV is also called positional vertigo or benign (not life-threatening) paroxysmal nystagmus. Nystagmus is a quick, shaky eye movement that you cannot control. BPPV causes sudden attacks of vertigo when you change your head position. Vertigo is the feeling that you or the room is moving or spinning. With each attack of vertigo, you may have nystagmus. The attacks of vertigo and nystagmus last from a few seconds up to 1 minute. BPPV symptoms often happen when small pieces of calcium float into the semicircular canals in your inner ears.

WHILE YOU ARE HERE:

Informed consent

is a legal document that explains the tests, treatments, or procedures that you may need. Informed consent means you understand what will be done and can make decisions about what you want. You give your permission when you sign the consent form. You can have someone sign this form for you if you are not able to sign it. You have the right to understand your medical care in words you know. Before you sign the consent form, understand the risks and benefits of what will be done. Make sure all your questions are answered.

Medicine

may be given to calm your stomach and prevent vomiting.

Treatment:

  • Surgery may be done to fill part of your ear canal with bone chips or medical glue. You may need surgery to cut a nerve in your ear.

  • Vestibular and balance rehabilitation therapy (VBRT) may be used to teach you exercises to improve your balance and strength. VBRT may help decrease your dizziness and prevent injuries if you are at risk for falls.

RISKS:

Treatment may cause the calcium pieces to leave one part of your ear canal and enter another. Even after treatment, your symptoms may not improve. Symptoms may return, and you may need treatment again. If you have surgery to treat your BPPV, you may have problems with your balance. After surgery, you may have temporary or permanent hearing loss.

CARE AGREEMENT:

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.

© 2015 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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