You will sit on the doctor's exam table with your legs
extended in front of you. The doctor will turn your head so that it is halfway
between looking straight ahead and looking directly to the side that causes the
worst vertigo. Without changing your head position, the doctor will guide you
back quickly so that your shoulders are on the table but your head is hanging
over the edge of the table. In this position, the side of your head that is
causing the worst vertigo is facing the floor. The doctor will hold you in this
position for 30 seconds or until your vertigo stops.
Epley maneuver: Step 2
slide 2 of 4
Then, without lifting up your head, the doctor will
turn your head to look at the same angle to the opposite side, so that the
other side of your head is now facing the floor. The doctor will hold you in
this position for 30 seconds or until your vertigo stops.
Epley maneuver: Step 3
slide 3 of 4
The doctor will help you roll in the same direction you
are facing so that you are now lying on your side. (For example, if you are
looking to your right, you will roll onto your right side.) The side that
causes the worst vertigo should be facing up. The doctor will hold you in this
position for another 30 seconds or until your vertigo stops.
Epley maneuver: Step 4
slide 4 of 4
The doctor will then help you to sit back up with your
legs hanging off the table on the same side that you were facing.
This maneuver is done with the
assistance of a doctor or physical therapist. A single 10- to 15-minute session
usually is all that is needed. When your head is firmly moved into different
positions, the crystal debris (canaliths) causing vertigo will move freely and
no longer cause symptoms.
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.