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Hi all,
I'm totally new here. My dad, age 85, has Meniere's and BPPV and has been taking Aclovir for about 3 weeks which Dr. Gacek at UMass Medical prescribed. I've heard very positive reports about using Aclovir and antivirals for Meniere's. Dr. Gacek said it also often works for BPPV. He said if it doesn't work, he would do physical therepy which I take to mean the Epley maneuver for the BPPV. So far, I don't think the Aclovir has helped. My dad will see the Dr. again next week and maybe face having the Epley maneuver.
However, my dad had a terrible experience with head positioning movements some years back. Maybe that doctor (a different doctor) didn't know what he was doing. On the other hand, the posts on this forum all sound very positive about the Epley and it sounds like it almost always works and that lots of people do a modified version at home. My mom is reluctant to have my dad do Epley and says we should let "sleeping dogs lie". Is it possible that the Epley could make my dad's Meniere's/BPPV worse? My dad has been free of violent vertigo attacks for years and I certainly don't want to bring those back. Thanks for any suggestions.
Carla
Carla,
There is a new device, called the Epley Omniax chair. Check it out on the web. It is for people with BPPV who cannot tolerate the funky head positions that you need to put your neck/head in to maneuver the crystals-or for stubborn cases-or for anyone who needs it!
There are only a few in the country being used, but there is a place in MA that is getting one this week. I would email the Epley Omniax chair people and ask them about it. They can give you the info.
I might be taking a spin in it next week. I have BPPV on both sides and the physical therapist there has done the epley very well with me, but there seems to be some stubborn debris on the left side that doesn't want to budge. :( From what I've read, the Omniax chair may not be the most pleasant of things-as the epley maneuver is not pleasant either. You have to get dizzy to move the crystals-but once you do, the result is fabulous!
But your description of your father tells me he might be a very good candidate for this. I know he's an elderly person, but I would not want to live with even a little dizziness if I knew there was something I could do about it! It is anxiety-provoking and exhausting. Not to mention uncomfortable and debilitating. I strongly urge you to get him whatever help his body can tolerate.
Hi Wannarun,
Thanks so much for the reply and info on the Omniax coming to MA. I saw the Omniax on YouTube a while back, but at the time the closest ones were in FL and MI. I checked again today and the Omniax is at the Arigg Eye and Ear Associates in Lawrence, MA. I also thought that the Omniax would be good for my dad, but my dad thinks it sounds like a nightmare. I hope you are able to try it out and get those stubborn crystals.
My poor dad. We are recently trying treatment for Parkison's symptoms, memory/confusion issues, and the Meniere's/BPPV. He's also having a hernia repaired just after the holidays, so that he can do physical therepy for the Parkinson's. I hope I'm not pushing too much on him. He's been extremely active all his life, an avid hiker and skier, but had to give up downhill skiing a few years ago with the Meniere's. Now the Parkinson's has slowed his gait way down so he can't walk and hike as much as he would like to. I don't know if his memory issues are from the Meniere's or Parkinson's or if he might have Alzheimer's. We postponed his memory testing at the Baystate Memory Program while we're working on the Meniere's treatment. I'm hoping his memory issues are brain fog from the Meniere's and that they may improve with the Acyclovir.
I was so hopeful about the Epley after reading many entries on this forum that I read some of them to my parents last night. My husband said what I was reading didn't sound encouraging at all, with all the spinning and vomiting and needing to stay in bed for days. The posts were from a few years back. Lots of folks were trying to encourage another member who dreaded the Epley.
I would just like to be sure that we don't do anything to make my dad's symtoms worse than they are now. He has learned to cope with moving his head very carefully when getting out of bed and with his chronic instability. The only thing my dad really complains about is his slow gait. However, some days are more wobbly than others for him. He did have one really dizzy week not too long ago which is what prompted his neurologist to suggest we see Dr. Gacek for the Meniere's/BPPV.
Thank you so much for your input in favor of Epley. I will certainly ask Dr. Gacek about the risks for my dad and whether he would recommend the Omniax.
Please post on your Omniax experience next week!
The epley manuver will in no way make matters worse. I perform it all the time with patients. You do not need a special table. WHat you do need is a professional who knows which canal the bppv is in and then treat appropriately. The epley is not the only treatment, there are other manuvers, once again, depending on what canal is involved, that is the important process is determining what canal is involved and to treat appropriately. Drugs only mask the problem and in no way solve it. Meclizine is commonly prescribe which only inhibits the CNS (central nervous system) and inhibits neural transmission to the vestibular system, which inturn makes balance worse. THe manuvers do cause dizziness, but also FIX the problem. I am learning a new manuver over christmas (from my sister) that hits all canals with 1 manuver vs what I do now with the different manuvers for different canal!! I am excited, she has been doing this for years, I only have about 9 months experience (many years as a therapist), she is a chiropractor with a specialty in neurology. It is hard to find someone who even knows how to treat BPPV's. GOOD LUCK!!!
Thank you very much for the info and encouragement. My dad also has surgery scheduled for a hernia repair on Jan 7th. I'm wondering if I should try to schedule the Epley or other repositioning therapy ahead of the surgery or wait until after. I'm just praying that the therapy will work for my dad. Just the test for BPPV made him miserably dizzy for an hour. It would be horrible to see him go through even worse dizziness if the procedure didn't help. Guess we have to give it a "whirl" :).
Hi helpmydizziness,
Thank you so much for the post! Your experience sounds miraculous. I'm so happy that the omniax worked perfectly for you. I wonder if wannarun, who posted here, ever tried the omniax. I'm curious if Dr. Arrigg determined which of your ear canals was affected before putting you in the omniax.

I have definitely been thinking about the epley maneuver, modified epley, and the omniax for my 85 year-old dad. I saw some posts on another forum from people who had bad experiences with the epley and were worse off afterwards, although this does seem rare. Yesterday I was beginning to think that maybe since my dad has learned to live with and compensate for his positional vertigo that we should leave it alone. He's currently recovering from a hernia repair. Fortunately, that's going great. He will have to recover completely from the surgery before tackling the BPPV. He also has arthritis in his neck and spine, so the omniax sounds all the better.

If you come across other omniax success stories please let me know.
The Epley can make you worse if you have BPPV in *both* ears.
While trying to "fix" one ear, the other ear can end up worse.
[QUOTE=otsand;4149165]The epley manuver will in no way make matters worse. I perform it all the time with patients. You do not need a special table. WHat you do need is a professional who knows which canal the bppv is in and then treat appropriately. The epley is not the only treatment, there are other manuvers, once again, depending on what canal is involved, that is the important process is determining what canal is involved and to treat appropriately. Drugs only mask the problem and in no way solve it. Meclizine is commonly prescribe which only inhibits the CNS (central nervous system) and inhibits neural transmission to the vestibular system, which inturn makes balance worse. THe manuvers do cause dizziness, but also FIX the problem. I am learning a new manuver over christmas (from my sister) that hits all canals with 1 manuver vs what I do now with the different manuvers for different canal!! I am excited, she has been doing this for years, I only have about 9 months experience (many years as a therapist), she is a chiropractor with a specialty in neurology. It is hard to find someone who even knows how to treat BPPV's. GOOD LUCK!!![/QUOTE]
dear otsand ---could you let me know what this "one " move technique is. eg that your sister uses (chiropractic) I have only just heard recently that moving my head in the correct way can help my menieres which i have had for about 3 years. I live in Australia. thanks ozzyman





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