How often should I do the half-somersault manoeuvre?

Edited , 11 users are following.

Someone posted about this manoeuvre on here a week or so ago, but I can't find the post now. I think whoever it was also mentioned how often you should do it, and how long you need to continue. I'd be very grateful if you'd post again.

As I'm suffering from BPPV - not for the first time - and was made thoroughly ill by the Epley manoeuvre when it was performed on me nearly 30 years ago, I thought I'd try the half-somersault manoeuvre while waiting for my physio appointment next week. I admit it took me a long time to psych myself up to try it, as I'm in my 70s, live alone and didn't want to make the vertigo worse again.

Anyway, I studied the recommended video and did the manoeuvre five times at 15-minute intervals, as suggested.

At the end of that time, I was suffering mild instability and "sea-sickness" but nothing approaching my post-Epley state. I've just done the Dix-Hallpike test now, and have found - somewhat to my surprise - that although it provoked an attack of spinning, it was slower and briefer than it's been to date. I therefore suspect I might be onto something.

The inventor of the manoeuvre suggests in the video that the vertigo should disappear instantly, but that certainly hasn't happened in my case. Other sites hint that it should be repeated over a longer period, but don't give any clear instructions.

Please could that helpful poster tell me how often I should do it, and how long I should keep it up in the hope of a full recovery? And thanks a million for your original post!

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  • Posted

    In theory, you only need to do it once, preferably under the supervision of ENT/neurotology. The reason for the supervision is that the crystals in the inner ear, instead of going where they should go, may go elsewhere.

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    • Posted

      Hi Eleftherio,

      Thank you for responding. Yes, that was my understanding of the theory.

      However, I read up on a few scholarly articles on the internet comparing the two, before risking the manoeuvre. Can't give references here, obviously, but they were authentic scientific sites. All stated that the half-somersault manoeuvre may have to be repeated a number of times though they didn't state how many or what the interval should be. Ditto for the inventor in her YouTube video.

      A couple of the sites also stated that the half-somersault, unlike the Epley, carries no danger of moving particles into the lateral canal and causing more persistent vertigo, so is safe to perform without supervision.

      I'll wait and ask the specialist physiotherapist about it next week.

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  • Posted

    Hi Lily,

    I was the one who posted it.  I personaly have to do it about 4 times and I space them about 30 minutes apart.  Some people only need to do it once.  The video is online if you google it.  Thsi site doesn't allow you  to shre links so you can private message me if you can't find it and I can share it there..J

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    • Posted

      Thanks Jackie, much appreciated.

      I'd been studying the video, as well as reading up on related scientific articles, ever since I saw your original post. I had a very bad time after an ENT performed the Epley manoeuvre on me around 1990, so wasn't keen to repeat that experience. I now understand from my reading that the original manoeuvre almost certainly shifted the debris into the lateral canal, which was what made me so ill. I also learned that this can't happen with the half-somersault - which was what finally gave me the courage to try it last night.

      The first attempt didn't produce any change, so I repeated it another 4 times at 15-minute intervals, as suggested in the video. I felt mildly woozy for an hour or so afterwards, but nothing like after the Epley, which made me ill for days. I thought I noticed a slight improvement when lying down last night, but the usual symptoms have returned this morning.

      How long have you been doing it now, and has there been any improvement?

      I'm going to bring this up at my upcoming appointment with the vestibular physio, and will ask whether he's prepared to guide me through the half-somersault, to make sure I'm doing it properly. No way is anyone ever trying the Epley on me again.eek

      Once again, many thanks. I hope you're soon feeling better.

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    • Posted

      Hi Lily. I had the same experience that you did with the Epley and I used to spend so much time and money going to the ENT to have his perform. Once I found the half somersault I have been so successful with it that I'd never go to the ENT anymore. I also only have bppv. What I do that is a little different than you if I do that I half an hour apart instead of 15 minutes. Why not try that. Some people have said they have to do it up to 10 times so don't get discouraged. Remember that you have to keep upright for 48 hours after doing any of these maneuvers.

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    • Posted

      Thanks Jackie. It's the keeping upright that's going to be the problem for me. I don't have a high-backed chair I can sleep in, and propping myself up on pillows in bed hurts my back so much, I just wriggle down flat again in my sleep.

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    • Posted

      Yeah you're going to have to figure that one out because it's super important so that it gives the crystals time to settle back in your ears correctly and not fall back in the canal. As far as the half somersault if it's just PPP that should work for you. You also don't want to bend over to pick things up during the 48 hours.

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    • Posted

      Thanks again Jackie. I'm pretty sure it is just BPPV. The symptoms are exactly the same as the last time it was diagnosed (albeit in the other ear) and I can elicit the Dix-Hallpike reaction - i.e. violent vertigo with nystagmus I can actually feel when lying down quickly with my head turned to the affected side.

      I've taken your advice on board. They're pretty good in this country about covering equipment hire on our medical insurance, so I'll ask the physio if there's any kind of device I can get on prescription for a couple of days to keep me upright when sleeping.

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    • Posted

      That sounds like a good solution. You have to keep up right. They make something like a bed pillow with arms on it but I don't know what you would call it in your country. That would help you.

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    • Posted

      Hello Lily and Jackie, I've never been inclined to sign up for any of these sites however, reading your posts has been so incredibly supportive that I had to chime in. Fortunately, my attacks are not frequent but this morning was by far the worst ever. I was terrified ... and when I discovered the half somersault I was encouraged as this morning's episode had worsened exponentially upon my doing the Epley maneuver. And although I did not find complete relief after the first try, your posts encouraged me to not despair. And so, having done it every 20 minutes for a total of ten times, I can honestly say that although I do not feel 100%, I can at least function with some sense of normalcy. But now that I am going to bed, I'm dreading the idea that it could return through the night. And so, Jackie, I will take your advice and try sleeping upright for the next two nights.

      In any case, I signed on simply not to feel so alone with this horrible affliction. I know I could have much worse things wrong, but this, when it comes over me, is brutal.

      Thanks again for the insight.

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    • Posted

      Yes I also have to do the half somersault at least 4 to 5 times before it's really effective. They say that you can do it up to 10 times but if I were you if you have to do it again I would wait at least 30 minutes in between sessions. And be sure you are timing each maneuver in the series accurately. It should not come back during the night because once the crystals are in place and you sleep upright for a couple nights without bending over they should settle back and you quite possibly may not ever have enough for episode. I've only had three and the first one was years apart so I hope that is encouraging to you.

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    • Posted

      Hi Marley,

      I'm glad to hear you've had some relief.

      I would, however, reiterate something I've said several times on these sites. The Epley and the half-somersault both have the same aim but they're entirely different manoeuvres. You should never attempt the Epley on your own unless you've been taught to do it by a physiotherapist and had supervised practice. If your symptoms are due to BPPV there's a risk that a badly executed Epley can send the crystals into the lateral canal, which will make you feel even worse for the rest of the day - though it will usually sort itself out overnight.

      The half-somersault doesn't carry this risk, so is suitable for unsupervised home use. I have to say I tried it a few times during my recent attack of BPPV and it didn't make any difference, though I know it works for some people. In the end, I got myself referred to a vestibular physiotherapist, who fixed it with the Epley.

      I hope you'll soon be feeling better.

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    • Posted

      Thanks so much Jackie! I did sleep upright and although it was a tad uncomfortable, I managed. And nor have I had many episodes ... I'm not sure if this was the fourth or the fifth but I do recall the first being almost exactly 20 years ago in October 1997. My dad suffered with it as well and I often wonder if its not hereditary.

      And so, I'm nearing 24 hours of this episode and must admit (though half afraid to jinx it) I've never felt recovered to this extent on day two. So for this reason, I'm truly thankful that I found this forum and the encouragement to sit on the floor and give the half somersault a whirl (teehee).

      Thanks again ... Marley

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    • Posted

      Thanks Lily, as indicated in my message to Jackie, I am indeed feeling better, and much ion this is thanks to both of you for the encouragement and the enlightenment. I was actually not aware that one ought to be supervised with the Epley. During my last episode a couple of years ago whilst at Emergency after the BPPV diagnosis, they wanted to perform the Epley but I was exhausted and terrified so the doctor printed the directions and told me to do it at home when I was ready ... which I did and it helped. But I do agree that it ought to be supervised and I'll most definitely not be doing it alone again.

      I feel badly for your that you did not have much success with the half somersault and hope that your treatment is at least helping you to live a normal life.

      Thanks again to both of you. I do hope that it will be a very long time before I find myself seeking support and guidance on this but to be honest, if it were going to happen soon, I'm glad it was now as on October 4th I'll be joining two university buddies with whom I have maintained fairly regular contact since we first met FORTY years ago this month and we're going to have a little milestone reunion and celebration!

      Thanks again,  Marley

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    • Posted

      Could you please help me to find the video.  I realize you can post it and I'm not sure how to private message.

      I hope you're able to help me.  Thank you.

       

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    • Posted

      Hello, I am only seeing this message from almost two years ago! I hope you managed to find a video on this. I'm actually in the midst of my first episode since last posting here. I came to the site to reread the posts to get up the courage to do the half-somersault again. As if this whole Covid19 scare wasn't enough to unnerve the bravest, this is really one of the last things I need. And I know, things could always be so much worse!

      I'm off to do my second round and hoping things will begin to improve!

      And again, I apologize for not having seen your post at the time!

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    • Posted

      hello just read you post i have vertigo never had it before had it 5 werks now because of the coronovirus i haventt actually seen snyone at the doctors they have given me tablets to try today i would like to try the half somersault but i cant tell which ear us the problem do you know if i can do on both sides just incase and if so should i do both sides straight away with space iof 15 min or shoukd i do one ear at a time ?

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