Excerpts of DizzyFIX in the News

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This changed my practice: DizzyFix Monday, September 24 This changed my practice: DizzyFix DizzyFix’s diagrams walk you through the steps needed for the Dix-Hallpike and Epley’s maneuvers, including a real-time display of exactly what path and angle to move the patient’s head through, and a timer to introduce appropriate pauses.   AHFMR Research News – Cool Tools Monday, May 9 The DizzyFIX was featured in the Alberta Heritage Fund for Medical Research’s magazine “Research News” Reader’s Digest – Easy Fixes … Read More

Awards & Grants Won by DizzyFIX

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DizzyFIX inventor Dr. Matthew Bromwich Runner Up for ITAC Hero Award Scientific Achievement Award – UWO Department of Otolaryngology Forefront R&D Grant from Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research Canadian Society for Clinical Investigation Product Award PSI Foundation Research Award    Canadian Society of Otolaryngology – Honorable Mention Forefront Research & Development Grant

Canadian Doctor Invents a Cure Then Gets the Dizzease(sic)

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On Aug 16th, 2014 I awoke feeling a little bit off. At first I wasn’t sure what was going on but I felt a little sick to my stomach and slightly dizzy. I turned to my left and sat up and my world started to turn, slowly at first. I lay back down immediately fearing I would fall and it all got a lot worse. The room spun quickly and I had trouble seeing. Just as I was starting to … Read More

I like to travel but I get Dizzy. What should I do?

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natural, drug-free treatment for vertigo and dizziness due to BPPV by helping patients perform the Epley Manoeuvre successfully.

Why did I get BPPV?

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People often ask what it was that made them get BPPV.  For many there is never really a satisfactory answer.  However we do know some factors which may pre-dispose a person to getting vertigo due to BPPV.  Any condition which damages the inner ear seems to be associated with BPPV.  This ranges from trauma, to infections to the ever present condition – old age. To put some specifics on what the etiology or causes of BPPV are: About 70% of people have age related BPPV … Read More

Epley, Semont or Brandt-Daroff Exercises? Which should I choose?

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Recently we were asked, “Which is best, the Epley, Semont or Brandt-Daroff for the treatment of BPPV?”. Like many things the answer isn’t perfectly clear. However, many studies have been done on each one and results have been reported with each maneuver. I’ll address each one below. 1) Brandt-Daroff maneuver (this example is for the Right side): This maneuver consists of sitting upright with your feet over the side of your bed, lying on your right side with your right ear against the … Read More

DizzyFIX inventor Dr. Matthew Bromwich Runner Up for ITAC Hero Award

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One of the world’s most common diseases is also simultaneously one of the easiest to cure and misdiagnose. According to Ottawa-based MD, Dr. Matthew Bromwich, CEO of Clearwater Clinical Ltd., the stats are dizzying. That’s why he and his team of medical and ICT professionals worked together to create the mobile application, DizzyFix, which can help cure vertigo on the spot. Over the course of a lifetime, more than 40 percent of people will experience some kind of dizziness. The … Read More

Vertigo has me at my wits’ end…I need more help!

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Vertigo and dizziness are very distressing problems.  Some say that nausea is worse than pain.  At least pain makes some physiologic sense. Vestibular diseases are problematic in that they are so poorly understood. Many patients  end up vague diagnosis such as recurrent vestibulopathy.  Medical science has just not reached a point where we can diagnose every kind of problem.  Further, even those conditions which we can diagnose may not have effective treatments.  Tinnitus is a good example of a difficult … Read More

What is Dizziness and Vertigo?

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It is difficult to discuss dizziness because it means different things to different people.  There are three main terms in use by physicians which describe what we all refer to as “dizziness” Disequilibrium Disequilibrium is the sensation of being off balance, much like when getting off a boat, and is sometimes characterized by falls in a specific direction. This condition is not often associated with nausea or vomiting or vertigo. Pre-syncope Pre-syncope (literally near fainting) or lightheadedness, like when standing up too … Read More

Epley Maneuver – How many times should it take?

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People often ask, “I have tried the Epley Maneuver, it didn’t work, should I keep trying?” In general terms, it may take several attempts to fully treat BPPV and most people can expect to have some recurrences.  We suggest that you need only perform the maneuver when you have an attack.  If you are not having symptoms then you don’t need to to do the maneuver although it may prevent recurrences.  It is always important to seek the advice of … Read More

I tried the Epley maneuver but it didn’t work.

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Although most people with BPPV can be treated with the Epley maneuver or a home treatment device.  About 5-12% of people cannot be treated.  There are several reasons which should be carefully considered. 1) You do not have BPPV.  There are many kinds of vertigo and only BPPV will respond to the Epley maneuver.  You should always get a proper diagnosis from a physician qualified to diagnose BPPV.  Several serious conditions can cause vertigo as part of their symptom complex and these … Read More

How long will I have BPPV?

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After being diagnosed with BPPV many people report mixed feelings.  First – relief at not having a brain tumor or stroke, second – happiness that there is a treatment and third – discomfort with having a chronic disease. BPPV is indeed a chronic disease.  The otoconia, (normal balance crystals) which cause the symptoms of BPPV when in the wrong place, do not disappear when treated with the Epley Maneuver or with home BPPV treatment, rather the particles are moved.  More than … Read More

How long does BPPV last? Why does it go and come back?

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We were recently asked, “Why does BPPV go away and come back?”.  To understand the treatment and natural history of BPPV it helps to understand how it happens in the first place. Lets imagine that the inner ear is akin to a tiny snow globe inside the head.  In a healthy person the snow inside this globe is actually stuck down but with age the snow comes loose and begins to fly around when disturbed.  Now lets imagine there is a … Read More

Mal de debarquement? Is that like BPPV?

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We recently were asked: “I think that I have Mal de Debarquement syndrome. I believe this because I tend to get it after train travel. In the past it took 6 weeks for it to go away. Now, it seems to be taking longer. Does the Epley maneuver work for this?” Until recently very few people knew about Mal de Debarquement syndrome. This syndrome can occur after any type of travel. The best analogy is sea sickness. When you first step … Read More

Superior and Horizontal Canal BPPV – what are those?

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Someone recently asked about the treatment for the other 2 canals in the inner ear and if the Epley maneuver work for those types of BPPV. The quick answer is no the Epley maneuver does not work for horizontal or superior canal BPPV but only for the more common posterior canal form of BPPV. The good news about that, however, is that those other two types are easier to treat. First – superior canal BPPV is theoretical and may not … Read More

The Epley maneuver worked – why do I still feel dizzy?

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A person with BPPV who was treated in Greece asked: “After the treatment maneuver I felt much better. However, I now feel,…off balance? Why? How long with this last? Should I keep trying the Epley treatment?” This is a common question and has an interesting, if theoretical, answer. It seems that some people cantell when they have BPPV just by the way they feel, even if they don’t experience vertigo at that moment. They just feel off, like something isn’t right. It is almost as if they … Read More

Can I prevent BPPV?

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We often are asked if there is anything a person can do to prevent BPPV from coming back. To date there is no evidence that doing a maneuver will prevent all recurrences. A recent study in 2008 (Daily exercise does not prevent recurrence of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. Otology and Neurotology) demonstrated this fact but lacked, in my opinion, sufficient numbers of patients to end the debate. It certainly would intuitively seem to make sense that a prophylactic maneuver would prevent, at … Read More

Can I do the maneuver more than once a day?

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Can I do the maneuver more than once a day? The short answer is “Yes” you can. However, usually in active BPPV you get dizzy during the maneuver. Many people find this repeated vertigo too much to do again and again. Usually BPPV causes nausea but not vomiting, unless of course you induce the vertigo over and over by repeating the maneuver. This is the reason I suggest you only do it once or twice a day. Further, it is … Read More

Can medications actually cause vertigo?

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Someone recently asked, “Do any medications cause vertigo?” The answer depends on what you mean exactly. Many medications can cause dizziness. This can be the light headedness associated with blood pressure medications to the woozy feeling from narcotics to the sleepy feeling of sedatives. However, vertigo (spinning dizziness) is not often caused by medication unless damage is being done to the organ of balance in the inner ear. In some cases damage can be temporary or it can be permanent. … Read More

So what does it feel like to have BPPV?

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  If you have had BPPV you will never forget what it feels like. But it is hard to explain to someone else. Many people report spinning: “Like falling off a building”, like “a roller coaster ride but worse”, like “my head was spinning”. To be honest, as someone who has had BPPV myself, it was really scary for the first few minutes. The irony that I had BPPV was not lost on me. However, until I confirmed for myself … Read More

I have BPPV. Which side do I treat first? Can I treat both sides?

We are often asked which side to treat with BPPV. This answer is relatively simple. The Dix-Hallpike maneuver is the standard test for BPPV. Basically what happens is that you lie down fast on your back and turn your head to one side (ideally looking up a bit too). After about 30 seconds have passed you will either be dizzy or have no reaction. In this example if you are on your left and you get dizzy on that side then you have … Read More

I’m only a child – can I have BPPV?

BPPV can affect people of any age as everyone has the otoconia (ear crystals) which causes BPPV.  These otoconia are a normal part of the balance system.  Most children with BPPV have recently been in some kind of accident where there is a degree of head injury. It is not clear if the injury shakes these crystals loose or if blood gets into the canals and causes the crystals to come loose, or if the blood itself causes the symptoms.  Most … Read More

I have BPPV. Which side do I treat first? Can I treat both sides?

We are often asked which side to treat with BPPV. This answer is relatively simple. The Dix-Hallpike maneuver is the standard test for BPPV. Basically what happens is that you lie down fast on your back and turn your head to one side (ideally looking up a bit too). After about 30 seconds have passed you will either be dizzy or have no reaction. In this example if you are on your left and you get dizzy on that side … Read More

Epley, Semont or Brandt-Daroff Exercises? Which should I choose?

Recently we were asked, “Which is best, the Epley, Semont or Brandt-Daroff for the treatment of BPPV?”. Like many things the answer isn’t perfectly clear. However, many studies have been done on each one and results have been reported with each maneuver. I’ll address each one below. 1) Brandt-Daroff maneuver (this example is for the Right side): This maneuver consists of sitting upright with your feet over the side of your bed, lying on your right side with your right … Read More

So what does it feel like to have BPPV?

If you have had BPPV you will never forget what it feels like. But it is hard to explain to someone else. Many people report spinning: “Like falling off a building”, like “a roller coaster ride but worse”, like “my head was spinning”. To be honest, as someone who has had BPPV myself, it was really scary for the first few minutes. The irony that I had BPPV was not lost on me. However, until I confirmed for myself that … Read More

Can medications actually cause vertigo?

Someone recently asked, “Do any medications cause vertigo?” The answer depends on what you mean exactly. Many medications can cause dizziness. This can be the light headedness associated with blood pressure medications to the woozy feeling from narcotics to the sleepy feeling of sedatives. However, vertigo (spinning dizziness) is not often caused by medication unless damage is being done to the organ of balance in the inner ear. In some cases damage can be temporary or it can be permanent. … Read More

Can I do the maneuver more than once a day?

Can I do the maneuver more than once a day? The short answer is “Yes” you can. However, usually in active BPPV you get dizzy during the maneuver. Many people find this repeated vertigo too much to do again and again. Usually BPPV causes nausea but not vomiting, unless of course you induce the vertigo over and over by repeating the maneuver. This is the reason I suggest you only do it once or twice a day. Further, it is … Read More

Can I prevent BPPV?

We often are asked if there is anything a person can do to prevent BPPV from coming back. To date there is no evidence that doing a maneuver will prevent all recurrences. A recent study in 2008 (Daily exercise does not prevent recurrence of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. Otology and Neurotology) demonstrated this fact but lacked, in my opinion, sufficient numbers of patients to end the debate. It certainly would intuitively seem to make sense that a prophylactic maneuver would … Read More

The Epley maneuver worked – why do I still feel dizzy?

A person with BPPV who was treated in Greece asked: “After the treatment maneuver I felt much better. However, I now feel,…off balance? Why? How long with this last? Should I keep trying the Epley treatment?” This is a common question and has an interesting, if theoretical, answer. It seems that some people can tell when they have BPPV just by the way they feel, even if they don’t experience vertigo at that moment. They just feel off, like something … Read More

Superior and Horizontal Canal BPPV – what are those?

Someone recently asked about the treatment for the other 2 canals in the inner ear and if the Epley maneuver work for those types of BPPV. The quick answer is no the Epley maneuver does not work for horizontal or superior canal BPPV but only for the more common posterior canal form of BPPV. The good news about that, however, is that those other two types are easier to treat. First – superior canal BPPV is theoretical and may not … Read More

Mal de debarquement? Is that like BPPV?

We recently were asked: “I think that I have Mal de Debarquement syndrome. I believe this because I tend to get it after train travel. In the past it took 6 weeks for it to go away. Now, it seems to be taking longer. Does the Epley maneuver work for this?” Until recently very few people knew about Mal de Debarquement syndrome. This syndrome can occur after any type of travel. The best analogy is sea sickness. When you first … Read More

How long does BPPV last? Why does it go and come back?

We were recently asked, “Why does BPPV go away and come back?”.  To understand the treatment and natural history of BPPV it helps to understand how it happens in the first place.   Lets imagine that the inner ear is akin to a tiny snow globe inside the head.  In a healthy person the snow inside this globe is actually stuck down but with age the snow comes loose and begins to fly around when disturbed.  Now lets imagine there is a … Read More

I’m only a child – can I have BPPV?

BPPV can affect people of any age as everyone has the otoconia (ear crystals) which causes BPPV.  These otoconia are a normal part of the balance system.  Most children with BPPV have recently been in some kind of accident where there is a degree of head injury. It is not clear if the injury shakes these crystals loose or if blood gets into the canals and causes the crystals to come loose, or if the blood itself causes the symptoms.  … Read More

How long will I have BPPV?

After being diagnosed with BPPV many people report mixed feelings.  First – relief at not having a brain tumor or stroke, second – happiness that there is a treatment and third – discomfort with having a chronic disease. BPPV is indeed a chronic disease.  The otoconia, (normal balance crystals) which cause the symptoms of BPPV when in the wrong place, do not disappear when treated with the Epley Maneuver or with home BPPV treatment, rather the particles are moved.  More … Read More

I tried the Epley maneuver but it didn’t work.

Although most people with BPPV can be treated with the Epley maneuver or a home treatment device.  About 5-12% of people cannot be treated.  There are several reasons which should be carefully considered. 1) You do not have BPPV.  There are many kinds of vertigo and only BPPV will respond to the Epley maneuver.  You should always get a proper diagnosis from a physician qualified to diagnose BPPV.  Several serious conditions can cause vertigo as part of their symptom complex … Read More

I like to travel but I get Dizzy. What should I do?

As we have talked about there are various kinds of “Dizziness”. Sometimes people confuse positional vertigo with motion sickness, because they both happen when in motion. BPPV is characterized by spinning vertigo when changing into certain positions.  These are typically rolling over in bed, looking up and to the side, or looking under something.  Often it happens on a specific side, either left or right, although some unlucky people have BPPV on both sides.  Many people who have BPPV are … Read More

Epley Maneuver – How many times should it take?

People often ask, “I have tried the Epley Maneuver, it didn’t work, should I keep trying?” In general terms, it may take several attempts to fully treat BPPV and most people can expect to have some recurrences.  We suggest that you need only perform the maneuver when you have an attack.  If you are not having symptoms then you don’t need to to do the maneuver although it may prevent recurrences.  It is always important to seek the advice of … Read More

My doctor said I had nystagmus, what is that?

One of the key findings in BPPV is the presence of nystagmus.  This is the medical term for the involuntary eye movement which occurs when the body changes position.  It is characterized by alternating smooth pursuit eye movements  in one direction and saccadic (quick catch up) movements in the other direction.  This is a useful phenomonon as it allows people to keep things in focus even moving and turning your head, without it things would be fuzzy when you nod … Read More

What is Dizziness and Vertigo?

It is difficult to discuss dizziness because it means different things to different people.  There are three main terms in use by physicians which describe what we all refer to as “dizziness” Disequilibrium Disequilibrium is the sensation of being off balance, much like when getting off a boat, and is sometimes characterized by falls in a specific direction. This condition is not often associated with nausea or vomiting or vertigo. Pre-syncope Pre-syncope (literally near fainting) or lightheadedness, like when standing … Read More

Can I treat BPPV alone – I am elderly

Someone recently asked me about their elderly mother doing maneuvers for the home treatment of BPPV.  Since she is elderly she apparently had difficulty moving her head back far enough to complete the standard maneuver.     The good news about home treatment is that the Epley Maneuver can be conducted at home with some help.  This is much more effective than previous maneuvers such as the Brant Daroff exercises.  The hope is that fewer maneuvers need be conducted to successfully treat the condition.  However, … Read More

Can I make my BPPV worse with failed treatment?

I was recently asked: “Has any BPPV patient managed to make their condition worse with a bungled treatment?” The answer is not particularly straight forward.  Any treatment of BPPV has the potential to convert to something called Horizontal canal BPPV. The most common type of BPPV is Posterior canal BPPV.  The estimated rate of this complication of treatment of BPPV is about 5%. You run this risk every time you roll over in bed but in particular during a repositioning maneuver. The … Read More

Post maneuver precautions – worth it?

Following a treatment maneuver for BPPV many practitioners recommend staying upright for 48 hours.  This recommendation makes some empiric sense.  The idea behind it is to allow the particles, disturbed like snow in a snow globe, to settle before exposing the opening of the posterior canal by lying down. In the attached image you can see the particles and the opening to the canal, at the top.  However, these precautions were never proven.  In fact, a number of researchers have demonstrated that restrictions … Read More

Vertigo has me at my wits’ end,..I need more help

Vertigo and dizziness are very distressing problems.  Some say that nausea is worse than pain.  At least pain makes some physiologic sense. Vestibular diseases are problematic in that they are so poorly understood. Many patients  end up vague diagnosis such as recurrent vestibulopathy.  Medical science has just not reached a point where we can diagnose every kind of problem.  Further, even those conditions which we can diagnose may not have effective treatments.  Tinnitus is a good example of a difficult … Read More

Why did I get BPPV?

People often ask what it was that made them get BPPV.  For many there is never really a satisfactory answer.  However we do know some factors which may pre-dispose a person to getting vertigo due to BPPV.  Any condition which damages the inner ear seems to be associated with BPPV.  This ranges from trauma, to infections to the ever present condition – old age. To put some specifics on what the etiology or causes of BPPV are: About 70% of people … Read More

Curing dizziness for thousands of people.

Back when I was training as an ENT surgeon in London Ontario, I learned about a condition called BPPV, the most common cause of “Vertigo“.   If you have BPPV, it can have a very profound impact on your life.   What I learned, however, was that most often it is incredibly easy to treat BPPV quickly without any drugs. I partnered with a few other doctors and some other business people to bring this treatment to the public.  Since then our … Read More