Objective: Alternative medical practices are common in the treatment of vertigo. This study compared the effects of Ginkgo biloba treatment with the homeopathic remedy Vertigoheel (Biologische Heilmittel Heel GmbH, Baden-Baden, Germany).
Design: Randomized, double-blinded, parallel group study.
Subjects: One hundred and seventy (170) patients, ages 60-80 years, with atherosclerosis-related vertigo.
Interventions: Patients were randomly allocated to receive treatment with either Vertigoheel (n = 87) or G. biloba (n = 83).
Outcome measures: The results were analyzed for the non-inferiority of Vertigoheel to G. biloba on the combined endpoint of changes from baseline to week 6 in dizziness score (assessed by questionnaire), frequency, duration, and intensity of vertigo episodes (recorded in patient diaries).
Results: Both treatments improved vertigo status. From a baseline mean value of 26.1 +/- 5.2 (on a 50-point scale) in the Vertigoheel group, the dizziness questionnaire score improved by -10.6 +/- 10.0, and by -10.7 +/- 9.0 from 25.8 - 4.7 in the G. biloba group. Statistical analysis of this endpoint showed that Vertigoheel was not inferior to G. biloba. The 95% confidence interval for the difference between treatment did not reach the inferiority threshold of 0.36 at any of the time points tested. The results were supported by the results of a line walking test, Unterberger's stepping test, and patient and physician global assessments of therapeutic effect. Both treatments were well tolerated.
Conclusions: Vertigoheel is an appealing alternative to established G. biloba therapy for atherosclerosis-related vertigo.