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A randomized clinical trial to assess the efficacy of the Epley maneuver in the treatment of acute benign positional vertigo.

Author(s): Chang AK, Schoeman G, Hill M

Affiliation(s): Department of Emergency Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center, Bronx, NY, USA. achang@montefiore.org

Publication date & source: 2004-09, Acad Emerg Med., 11(9):918-24.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Randomized Controlled Trial

OBJECTIVES: To compare the efficacy of the Epley maneuver with that of a placebo maneuver in patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) with benign positional vertigo (BPV). METHODS: This was a prospective, randomized, single-blind placebo-controlled trial. Consecutive adult ED patients presenting to a university teaching hospital with BPV were randomized to treatment with either the Epley or placebo maneuver. The severity of vertigo was evaluated on a 0 to 10-point scale before and after the maneuvers. RESULTS: Eleven patients were randomized to the Epley group and 11 to the placebo group before the trial was terminated, based on a planned interim analysis. The median decreases in vertigo severity were 6 (95% confidence interval [95% CI] = 4 to 9) for the Epley group and 1 (95% CI = 0 to 3) for the placebo group (p = 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: The Epley maneuver is a simple bedside maneuver that appears to be more efficacious than a placebo maneuver in the treatment of acute BPV among ED patients.

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