The Epley maneuver is a procedure that helps to treat the symptoms of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).
BPPV is caused by a problem in your inner ear. Your semicircular canals are found inside your ear. They detect motion and send this information to your brain. The utricle is a nearby part of the ear. It contains calcium crystals (canaliths) that help it detect movement.
Sometimes these crystals detach from the utricle and end up inside the semicircular canals. When these crystals move inside the canals, they may send incorrect signals to your brain about your position. This can make you feel like the world is spinning. This is called vertigo.
Dr. John Epley designed a series of movements to dislodge the crystals from the semicircular canals. These movements bring the crystals back to the utricle, where they belong. This treats the symptoms of vertigo. This series of movement is called the Epley maneuver.
Why might I need the Epley maneuver?
You may need to try the Epley maneuver if you have symptoms of BPPV. In BPPV, vertigo may come on with certain head movements. It may last for up to a minute. These symptoms may be more frequent at times. You may also have nausea and vomiting.
Often BPPV happens without any known cause. Sometimes there is a cause. Causes of BPPV can include:
- A head injury
- Problems after ear surgery
The Epley maneuver is safe. It often works very well to treat the symptoms of BPPV.