Horizontal canal BPPV

Newsflash: Dr. Foster to appear live on Sirius XM’s Dave Nemo show on Tuesday, August 16 at 7:30am CT / 6:30am MT.  Listen LIVE on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Trucking Channel 146

We’ve talked about BPPV in the videos and prior postings.  The semicircular canals are the ring-shaped sensors for spinning, and there are three in each ear, so this system is fully 3D.  You can sense spinning in any direction thanks to this set-up.  Most BPPV affects a vertical sensor, the posterior semicircular canal.  However, rarely you can get BPPV in another of these rings, the horizontal canal.  This ring is set nearly level or horizontal in your head, and controls responses to side to side head movements.  It’s also stronger and more used than the other canals, so it causes a more intense spinning when it is involved.

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Ask the Doctor

At the very end of yoga class you lie in this posture |shavasana – aka “corpse’s pose” – for 5 to 10 minutes.  I got extreme vertigo that didn’t fully resolve until 2 trips to a vestibular physical therapist… The other day I spoke with a colleague and she told me she had BBPV and started to explain it to me when I stopped her.  She then told me that it had gone away after treatment, but returned…after shavasana.  Why does this happen?

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SSCD: Fixing the problem 

In a normal inner ear, sound waves travel from a membrane, the oval window, through the cochlea to another membrane at the far end of the cochlea, the round window.  Sound waves need this second window in order to flow through the ear.  In superior canal dehiscence, the hole in the canal acts as another window, allowing sound to pass into the canal and tricking it into signaling spinning.  SSCD is sometimes called third window syndrome for this reason. The hole also has other serious effects. 

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