Objectives: Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) can be treated using a simple repositioning maneuver. This study demonstrates the effects of early repositioning therapy in patients with BPPV, especially with regard to recurrence.
Methods: We enrolled 138 consecutive patients who had been diagnosed with BPPV in the emergency rooms and ENT out-patient clinics of Chung-Ang University Hospital and Samyook Medical Center from January to June 2009. All patients immediately underwent appropriate canalith repositioning procedures (CRPs) depending on canalith type and location. The CRPs were performed daily until the patient's symptoms were resolved. The patients were classified into two groups according to the duration between symptom onset and initial treatment: less than 24 hours (early repositioning group, n=66) and greater 24 hours (delayed repositioning group, n=72). We prospectively compared the numbers of treatments received and the recurrence rates between the two groups.
Results: Follow-up periods ranged from 8 to 14 months, 77 cases involved posterior canal BPPV, 48 cases were lateral canal BPPV (of which 20 cases were cupulolithiasis), and 13 cases were multiple canal BPPV. BPPV recurrence was found in a total of 46 patients (33.3%). The necessary numbers of CRPs were 2.3 for the early repositioning group and 2.5 for the late repositioning group, a difference that was not statistically significant (P=0.582). The early repositioning group showed a recurrence rate of 19.7%, and the delayed repositioning group showed a recurrence rate of 45.8% (P=0.002).
Conclusion: Performing repositioning treatments as soon as possible after symptom onset may be an important factor in the prevention of BPVV recurrence.
Keywords: Positional vertigo; Prognosis; Recurrence.