View Full Version : How Long Does The Vertigo Last

06-03-08, 12:52 PM
Hi All,

I am new to the boards and was just diagnosed with BPPV. I was wondering how long your vertigo lasted if you DID NOT have the epley done. I am on day 10 now and am really really hoping it will just resolve on its own because I am really terrified of having the epley done. I tried doing MEP at home, but I can't seem to go through with it. I just always jerk up as soon as I get dizzy even if I grit my teeth, hold on to the bed and really decide to do the MEP. I don't know whats wrong with me.

So...how long can I expect this to last without treatment?

06-03-08, 01:08 PM
Hi Tinywings

I have no personal experience of BPPV but from what I've read about it, sometimes the crystals will realign themselves - I don't know how or when.
You're not supposed to do this yourself at home unless you've been specially instructed in the way to do it for your particular problem and it also depends on which ear is affected. I'd imagine that living with spinning dizziness is much worse than having the Epley done - and it works very well first time for a lot of people.

Also, have you seen a neurotologist? They're the best people to see for a proper diagnosis. Sometimes family doctors refer to all dizziness as BPPV because they don't have a great understanding of balance issues.

06-03-08, 01:11 PM
Thanks for you answer! style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif

Yes, I have a fabulous neurotologist that I just recently found after this spinning episode started. I have also heard that the "rocks" will eventually just dissolve on their own, is this something you guys have heard before? Hmm....

06-03-08, 01:21 PM
Yes I have heard this, hopefully members with BPPV will be able to give you more advice though.

06-03-08, 01:34 PM
In &#39;pure&#39; cases of BPPV (no other inner ear problems), symptoms usually resolve in about 6 weeks without treatment. In &#39;complicated&#39; BPPV (other inner ear problems lead to repeated shedding of otoconia crystals), symptoms can persist indefinitely. The Epley maneuver can be performed while you are medicated to control both vertigo and anxiety symptoms. Ask your neurotologist if you can have the Epley performed in the office after you have taken 1 diazepam (Valium). We find this VERY helpful for patients who are afraid to have the Epley done.

06-03-08, 01:48 PM
Maybe I can help you feel better about the Elpey with my story.
I ended up in the ER when because in bed i turned my head to the left and the room would spin and my eyes would dart around (nystamus). It freaked me out and I had no idea what was going on.

At the ER they hooked me up to heart monitor and a doctor came to see me. I had to demo the nystamus to several people. That was fun. The Doc did the dix-hallpike test wrong, he put me back to the left side and I got dizzy but he said he saw nothing, he then moved me to the right and i got dizzy again. But he never reset me in between!! so what he really did was the first 2 movements for Epley on the left side. So it is not surprising he saw it on the right side because he never reset me.

Because he only saw it on the right side he figured that was the bad side. So he demonstrated epley for the right side and walked away! Said do this 3 times a day at least 10 min apart. So i did it right there. First position was no vertigo, but there should have been if it was on the bad side... then the other positions did trigger it.

I went home and decided he was wrong about the side and did much reading and did the dix-hallpike test myself. My Wife is a Nurse so she observed and helped. The test showed left side.

So I did the Elpey for the left side. First position i had vertigo and nystamus, same with the others. For each position it lasted several seconds. It was not fun, but I figured 5 min of nystamus is worth a cure!!!

I repeated it and only 1 or 2 positions triggered it, repeated again and no positions triggered it!!!

I am very happy now, 5 min was well worth it. If you can get a medical person to help you through it, if not get a loved one/friend to hold your head and tell you it is OK and will be better in a few seconds.

So long story to say, it can be done!! It is scary when everything is going on but after you will be happy! You&#39;ll be sooo glad you were brave and pushed through it. Epley can be hard because the vertigo happens, but please, don&#39;t give up on it too soon.

06-03-08, 02:22 PM
Curious as to what other conditions can cause repeated shedding of otoconia?

06-03-08, 02:25 PM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (nitty2 @ Mar 6 2008, 09:22 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}> (http://index.php?act=findpost&pid=50315)</div><div class='quotetop'></div><div class='quotemain'>Curious as to what other conditions can cause repeated shedding of otoconia?[/b]</div>

Migraine, Meniere&#39;s, degeneration of the ear secondary to aging (characterized by progressive sensorineural hearing loss) are what we see most often in recurrent BPPV patients.

07-03-08, 08:52 PM
Hi tinywings

your epley should always be done by a medic the first time. yes it will make you dizzy and that will last a few minutes and you may feel slightly off for a few days afterwards but would that not be better than keeping it till it gets better on its own which could take anything from 6 weeks upwards? if i was you i would go for it. i have bppv but was unable to have epley done because of where the crystals were lying, i did the brandt daroff exercise for a few weeks and this did help. good luck and go for it, its worth it if it means life without being dizzy.

08-03-08, 01:31 PM
This is interesting. How do they even know where the crystals are? I thought they could only determine that you either have them stuck in an unfortunate place or not.

Am still really scared of the epley. I am thinking maybe I can numb myself up with enough valium so I am not so dizzy, is this possible? Doc said to take some valium before I come in. Hmm....

08-03-08, 07:27 PM
Hi again

I think the direction of any nystagmus tells them which canal its in. i have put a link below to the best site i have found with info on all dizzy conditions, this link will take you to the bppv page, read it fully and hopefully it will help you understand a bit more about the condition. good luck.

http://www.dizziness-and-balance.com/disor.../bppv/bppv.html (http://www.dizziness-and-balance.com/disorders/bppv/bppv.html)

10-03-08, 07:01 PM
Thanks everyone. Made an appointment to have an epley and some testing done on Friday - Fingers crossed. Eek! :girl_cray:

10-03-08, 07:20 PM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Tinywings @ Mar 10 2008, 03:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}> (http://index.php?act=findpost&pid=50881)</div><div class='quotetop'></div><div class='quotemain'>Thanks everyone. Made an appointment to have an epley and some testing done on Friday - Fingers crossed. Eek! :girl_cray:[/b]</div>

yay!!!! good for you!!!
It will be worth it, best of luck!!!

10-03-08, 07:36 PM
RIGHT ON! GOOD FOR YOU!! just think of how much better it will be after it. how much better it will be, you can do this.

good luck


10-03-08, 08:04 PM
yay, well done. will be thinkin of you on friday. let us know how you get on. remember to rest afterwards and sleep propped up for a few days, the docs will let you know all the stuff you need to know for aftercare.

10-03-08, 08:35 PM
Thanks guys, you are the best! style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/happy.gif

15-03-08, 01:22 PM
Well, I did it. I had the epley done yesterday. I was so scared, but finally, after jerking up a few times managed to go through with it. They found out the problem was my right ear.

I have to say I don't think it worked this time though. I just bent very slightly and thought I felt the beginnings of a spin. I guess I have to wait till the 48 hours are over and really put myself in a spinny position.

Bleh, I really hope I am wrong!!

15-03-08, 02:49 PM
Well done tinywings for going through with it, i know it was scary for you and i really hope it has worked. if it doesnt and you need to have it done again at least you know what to expect and you will get through it. take it easy and no bending down lol. let us know how you are doing.

16-03-08, 01:42 AM
good for you! I really did not feel good after my Epley, some movements triggered very strange feelings.

know that I will get better, it just take a little time.

16-03-08, 06:25 PM
I am new to this forum/website and I am very curious. My dizziness started last month when I was driving home and had a extreme dizzy attack after a brief pressure in my head. It seems as if everything was pulling to the left. My husband took me to the ER where they performed a CT scan of my brain. They thought they saw something in my brain and ordered me to see a neurologist the next morning. They thought it might had been a stroke. The neurologist sent me for an MRI the same day. My MRI with contrast came back completely normal. He attributed it to possible migraines. I had no headache. Two days later the dizziness was back. It comes and goes, but the only odd thing is that I can bring the dizziness on if I start moving my right eye. I feel a wierd sensation behind my eye when I move it. I also get occasional pains in that eye. I get nausea with it, but when it gets bad I get diarrhea with it. I was seen by an eye doctor two weeks ago and everything came back normal. I then made an appointment for my annual appt. with my cardiologist. He seems to think it is positional vertigo and is having me see an ENT on March 24. It is causing me great anxiety and I am afraid to drive by myself, because it comes on more frequently when I drive. Can someone help?

<div class='quotetop'>(Tinywings;27958)</div><div class='quotemain'>Hi All,

I am new to the boards and was just diagnosed with BPPV. I was wondering how long your vertigo lasted if you DID NOT have the epley done. I am on day 10 now and am really really hoping it will just resolve on its own because I am really terrified of having the epley done. I tried doing MEP at home, but I can't seem to go through with it. I just always jerk up as soon as I get dizzy even if I grit my teeth, hold on to the bed and really decide to do the MEP. I don't know whats wrong with me.

So...how long can I expect this to last without treatment?</div>

16-03-08, 08:21 PM
so it appears my epley did not work. I waited exactly 48 hours (lol) till I put myself in a spinny position. Bummer for sure, didn't work. I am so mad. Has this happened to anyone else ?

16-03-08, 08:30 PM
my first one did not fix it, I was doing it at home and I ended up doing it several times before i stopped getting nystagmus. Many people say to only do it once per week, however I fond several websites that mentioned doing it once per day at home, and many places that stated they repeat the eply 3 times for each treatment.

i was very confident to do it myself, and in fact that was my doctors orders. I do NOT recommend someone doing it unless they are very confident that they know what they are doing and have a helper that is equally confident.


16-03-08, 08:50 PM
Hi tinywings, yep, sometimes it needs to be done again im afraid. speak to your specialist or physio before attmpting any kind of home epley to check how long you need to wait to have it done again.

17-03-08, 03:13 AM
I am having a follow up appointment on Thursday. I would assume they will just redo it then, or so I am hoping. I really don't want to wait much longer. I will make them repeat the damn thing till its gone, lol. I am so ready to be dizzy free and have a nice glass of wine to celebrate.

20-03-08, 11:38 AM
Alrighty, time for my second epley today. Wish me luck that it works this time. I am sick and tired of this by now, seriously :mad:

Hope everyone has a great, spinfree day!

20-03-08, 02:30 PM
Good luck Tinywings style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif Hopefully this will be 'the one'.

Let us know how it goes.

20-03-08, 07:53 PM
Hi Tinywings, i really really hope the epley has worked for you this time and you will soon be able to sit with that glass of wine you mentioned. good luck.

25-03-08, 03:32 PM
I've had BPPV for 4 months, I wasted the first two months with a home therapist, then I saw a neurologist who did the epley along with the Brandt-Daroff exercises in his office. I've been doing the Brandt-Daroff at home twice a day with 3 reps. I have good days and bad - I think I'm better now but still have the dizzies. I wish the "rocks" would reposition and leave me alone. Barbara

30-03-08, 11:50 AM
Tinywings - when I was first diagnosed with BPPV just under a year ago I was devasted and became underconfident in all sorts of things. I could not swim, drive, ride my bike and was scared to go out alone. People on this website really helped me get back in control and gave helpful advice, especially Agnes! Gradually I got back swimming, driving riding my bike etc. In fact the whole episode probably only lasted a week. My BPPV came on several weeks after I had the flu for the first time last year. I did not have any recurrence of the BPPV until this year - in February several weeks after a virus and again the other day after another throat virus. This time the symptoms have manifested differently. The first time attacks were triggered by head movements in any direction and sleeping on my side in bed. This time (touch wood) and second time (attack was only one or two episodes) I was alerted to the dizziness when I was asleep and it woke me up. Unfortunately I am a restless sleeper at the best of times and this attack has left me very tired as I am scared to go to sleep. I slept with loads of pillows one night and ended up with a stiff neck and shoulders. The next night it seemed better but the pillows seem like marshmallows and any movement in them seems to make me slightly dizzy but do not experience the full works. I am curious to know if anyone has sat out the complete dizziness at night time. I feel like I am going to fall through the bed and move to avert this feeling. Trouble is I get this on both right and left sides and can only lie on my back. I think that my attacks are brought on by viral infections - can anyone confirm this, I don't have a particular pattern of how long they last and they all seem different. But I have been able to manage them and really appreciate the information gathered from this site as it helps me understand the condition. In fact since getting BPPV I am amazed at how many people do suffer from dizziness.

30-03-08, 02:29 PM
hi annamary

bppv is very very rarely caused by a virus but its not impossible. for most its cos of those crystals moving and my theory is, if they moved once then they can move again but perhaps its made me slightly cynical about that. I always go to sleep on my right side, thats my bad side and i quite often feel like im lying on a water bed or on a boat with the feelings of false motion. i tend to just lie still until it either settles down or i fall asleep. I have been awakened from sleep by spinning on a couple of occasions, strangely enough i was aware that i had tilted my head back (i was lying on my left side which is not by bad side) just before the spin. I havent had spins for a while but still get all the other false motion stuff like swaying feelin. When i do get spins now i try not to move and just ride them out and i dont avoid lying on that side cos the more you do it then the spins seem to lessen till the go away. Is your spinning still only associated with head movement and turning over in bed? if not then its possible that you may have labs or vn which is caused by a virus. might be worth checking this out with the doc if you are dizzy 24/7 .

30-03-08, 09:56 PM
I completely forgot to report back. So I had my second Epley last Thursday, wore my neckbrace and held my head still like a good girl for 2 days and....TADAAA...the rocks are gone. The second one did the trick for me.

Let's just hope they don't return too soon. Thanks everyone for answering all my questions.

P.S. And yes, I have had my wine already style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif

31-03-08, 10:00 AM
Hello Agnes
thanks for the advice. I only get spinning when I am in bed. During the episodes I always avoid lying on my side - both are affected but after a few days gradually start lying back on them. It is very difficult for me to get good sleep during these times and I think things seem so much worse in the dark and in the middle of the night. So I get very scared and tired. But I am interested in the fact that I have had three attacks now and each several weeks after a viral infection. My doc did diagnose BPPV and the symptoms fit with this as it is positionally related. Until last year I had never had the flu and then a few weeks later get BPPV, I rarely got any viruses until this year too and after each I have had relatively minor short attacks of spinning in bed when I lie on both sides. Nothing like the first one which was when I got out of bed, when I looked up, when I turned my head and sleeping. I have to admit that before the last attack, which was on Thursday night/Friday morning I had drunk a fair amount of red wine after a period of abstinence. But I have drunk before and not been spinning.

31-03-08, 10:06 AM
Congratulations Tinywings!! I bet that wine tasted great style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif

If you have time, would you post your story in the Success Stories forum please? It will give such hope to people who are newly-diagnosed with BPPV.

Enjoy doing all the things BPPV stopped you doing style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif

31-03-08, 08:08 PM
Great news tinywings, im so happy for you and i hope you stay dizzy free forever.

Annamary, I dont know what virus could cause the crystals to come loose in your ear hun as you are the first person i have met for whom its been caused by a virus. might be worth asking your doc to explain the difference between bppv thats caused by virus and classic bppv, i would be interested to know the answer to that too hun. i really hope you feel better soon.

01-04-08, 11:38 PM
Agnes I think that there could be a link to the viruses or it could be a coincidence. I have not got a clue and I don't know how you find out. The last two episodes were so much easier to cope with and I only had a couple of spins with each. But I am very nervous of lying on my sides and avoid it and am now particularly interested that people advise against this. I don't know how to cope with it as I honestly feel I am going to fall through the bed and it is so scary as most people will know. My pattern of behaviour has been to avoid putting myself in these positions but subconsciously seem to try them out a few days after the attacks. I soon move if I feel dizzy. Looking back to my childhood I did have dodgy ears - and was very badly affected by measles aged 7 years and was left with a mid frequency 30 decibel hearing loss - discovered when I was 21. Still have difficulty hearing conversations and people who don't talk clearly. Don't think this has anything to do with it but I remember going a bit dizzy as a kid - nothing like BPPV but like being off balance. Funny as I also loved spinning round and making myself dizzy too! Thanks for your help. Annamary

02-04-08, 08:24 PM
Hi annamary

its very natural to avoid the positions which make you dizzy with bppv and doctors seem to give different advice about it. some say, avoid and some say, the more you do it the less dizzy you will be so i guess we have to do whats best for us as an individual. i so know what you mean about the spins, when it happens you feel like you are gonna fall of the planet, i know i do lol. its just the worst feeling in the world. I used to love makin myself dizzy when i was a kid too and as a teenager i loved the waltzers at the funfair and would stay on them till my money was gone without a break, as i got older i found that i got a headache on them so avoided it but there is no way on earth you would catch me on one now. have to say, i have never liked swings in the kids playpark, its always made me feel yucky. Just keep doing what you are more comfy with hun and i hope it settles down again soon for you. style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif

05-04-08, 06:31 PM
I have had some horrendous bouts were it lasts along time , i cannot open my eyes due to the spinning being very fast, i do keep my wits about me although i feel shaky sickness and palpatations, sometimes if i hold my head straight ahead it stops but the minute i turn even slightly to either side it spins again- the longest i have suffered is an hour or so and left me with a huge migraine, i had a audio test yesterday which shows a definate issue with my right ear!! although the specialist seems to think the OA in my neck is causing Cervical vertigo and so the 2 problems on the go are not good lol

i am currently taking betahistine 3 times aday and waiting for a brain scan

07-09-08, 11:01 PM
HURRAY! Tinywings. I'm so happy you're feeling better! Kendra