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The Epley and Semont maneuvers are exercises used to treat benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). They are done with the assistance of a doctor or physical therapist. A single 10- to 15-minute session usually is all that is needed.
When your head is firmly moved into different positions, the calcium crystal (canalith) debris causing vertigo will slip out of the semicircular canal into an area of the inner ear where it will no longer cause symptoms. Two maneuvers have been used successfully: the Epley maneuver and the Semont maneuver.
The Epley maneuver is performed as follows:
The Semont maneuver is performed as follows:
In some cases, your doctor or physical therapist may have you do a modified Epley procedure at home. If your doctor has shown you how and you feel confident, you can try this at home to get rid of your vertigo.
The Epley and Semont maneuvers may improve or cure benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) with only one treatment. Some people need multiple treatments.
Epley and Semont maneuvers are used to treat BPPV.
The Epley procedure is safe and works well to treat benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).footnote 1
The Semont maneuver may work to stop symptoms of BPPV. But the evidence is not as good as it is for the Epley procedure.footnote 1
These maneuvers should not be done on people with back or spine injuries or problems.
Sometimes the maneuver can move the debris from one inner ear canal to another. This can cause a different kind of vertigo.
The Epley and Semont maneuvers are more effective than other treatments for BPPV, such as exercises (for example, the Brandt-Daroff exercise). footnote 1Exercises do not treat the cause of BPPV. They help speed up compensation by the brain. When the Epley and Semont maneuvers work, they can relieve symptoms of vertigo quickly.
If the Epley and Semont maneuvers don't work to relieve your symptoms of vertigo, you may not have the most common type of BPPV. Or you may not have BPPV at all.
Fife TD, et al. (2008). Practice parameter: Therapies for benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (an evidence-based review). Report of the Quality Standards Subcommittee of the American Academy of Neurology. Neurology, 70(22): 2067–2074.
Current as of: July 28, 2019
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal MedicineKathleen Romito, MD - Family MedicineE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Current as of: July 28, 2019
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
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