Canalth Repositioning

1 What is a Canalith Repositioning Procedure?

The canalith repositioning procedure can help relieve benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BBPV). This is a condition in which you experience brief but intense, episodes of dizziness that happen when you move your head.

Vertigo usually results from a problem with the part of the middle ear responsible for balance (vestibular labyrinth). BBPV occurs when minute particles called otoconia in one part of your inner ear break loose and drop into the canals of your inner ear.

The canalith repositioning procedure can move the otoconia to a part of your ear where they will no cause dizziness. The canalith repositioning method is performed in your doctor's office and consists of several simple head maneuvers. 

This procedure is quite effective, relieving vertigo in nearly 80 percent of individuals after one or two treatments. However, the problem may recur.

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2 Reasons for Procedure

The main reason to perform a canalith repositioning procedure is to move the symptom-causing otoconia from the fluid-filled semicircular canal of your inner ear into a tiny bag-like open area (vestibule) that houses one of the otolith structures (utricle) in your ear.

Once there, these particles will not cause vertigo and will likely dissolve or be reabsorbed by bodily fluids in your ear.

3 Potential Risks

It is imperative that the canalith repositioning method is performed under the supervision of a medical professional due to certain risks involved, these include:

  • Neck or back injury.
  • Movement of the otoconia into a canal other than the utricle, which can continue the cause of vertigo.

Side effects, including feelings of nausea, lightheadedness, and dizziness, which may require medication to relieve.

It is very vital to tell your doctor about any medical condition such as a neck or back condition, a detached retina, or vascular problems before starting the canalith repositioning procedure.

You may also need to delay having the canalith repositioning procedure.

4 Preparing for your Procedure

The canalith repositioning method does not have any special preparations. Wear clothing that will y move freely and comfortably through each of the maneuvers.

5 What to Expect

Read on to learn more about what to expect before, during, and after your canalith repositioning procedure.

The canalith repositioning procedure involves holding four distinct positions for about 30m to 45 seconds each as long as symptoms remain while you hold that position.

Typically, you will remain in each position for an extra 20 seconds after your symptoms have stopped. The procedure may be repeated three or more times within a treatment session.

You may wear an infrared imaging device over your eyes depending on your health provider's preferences.

This device enables him or her to examine your eyes during each maneuver. The device can help but is not necessary for a successful treatment. The following steps are involved in canalith repositioning procedure.

  • Move from a sitting position to a reclining position with your head turned to the affected side y 45 degrees. Your health provider will help extend your head over the edge of the table at a slight angle.
  • With your head still extended as in the previous position, you will be prompted to turn your head slowly away from the affected side b about 90 degrees.
  • Roll onto your side. Your head should be slightly angled while you look down at the floor.
  • In the last step, you carefully return to a sitting position with your head tilted down and returned to a center position. After the procedure, do not let the treated ear below the level of your shoulders for the rest of that day, so do not lie flat the rest of the day treatment. At night, sleep on a slight incline with your head above your shoulders, making use of a few pillows. This lets the particles floating in your vestibular labyrinth settle in your utricle or be reabsorbed by your body fluids. The following morning, follow your doctor's orders, you may need to perform similar exercises but without hanging your head over the edge of the bed by yourself to check whether the procedure in the office was effective.

Tell your doctor if our vertigo continues. You may need to perform these exercises for several days before your symptoms subside.

6 Procedure Results

Understanding the results of your canalith repositioning procedure will be made possible by your doctor.

Almost 80 percent of individuals who undergo the procedure experience relief.

If symptoms return, however, then a repeat of the canalith repositioning procedure is required.

It may be necessary to repeat the procedure several times to relieve your symptoms. Talk to your doctor if your symptoms do not improve.