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iPhone App Helps To Cure Vertigo 57

vleky writes "This is thinking outside the box ... or head. Dr. Matthew Bromwich of the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario has written an iPhone app to help doctors with the Epley maneuver to cure some forms of vertigo. The patient places the iPhone against his or her forehead and the app leads the doctor through the maneuver. Bromwich's first attempt at the app sounded even more fun. With that version, the iPhone hung from the front of a baseball cap the patient wore, and the patient tried to keep a ball centered in a twisting tube by moving their head. Winning the game meant the maneuver had been successfully completed and the vertigo cured."
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iPhone App Helps To Cure Vertigo

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    iPhone app cures certain types of vertigo?

    You're pulling my leg. I'm not going to fall for that.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      It's BPPV. It's actually fairly common. I've had it. []

      The treatment is also fairly simple -- it's called the Epley Maneuver. You can even do it yourself (there are versions of it that are suitable for self-administration -- you can google them). It's extremely simple... but it's surprising how many general practitioners don't know it (well, mine certainly didn't). They probably read about the procedure in a text book once and then promptly forgo

      • by pushing-robot ( 1037830 ) on Saturday May 08, 2010 @02:24PM (#32140334)

        2) head tilted 45 degrees to the right
        3) tilt head 90 degrees to the left
        4) tilt head another 90 degrees to the left

        uh... pictures?

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          2) head tilted 45 degrees to the right 3) tilt head 90 degrees to the left 4) tilt head another 90 degrees to the left

          uh... pictures?

          I realized that they were relative rotations, but forgot they were in degrees and tried to do radians.

          Worse still, I originally assumed that the rotation axis was about the forwards horizontal....

      • Is it 60 seconds or 5 minutes?

        The procedure is as follows:

        1. Sit upright.
        2. Turn your head to the symptomatic side at a 45 degree angle, and lie on your back.
        3. Remain up to 5 minutes in this position.
        4. Turn your head 90 degrees to the other side.
        5. Remain up to 5 minutes in this position.
        6. Roll your body onto your side in the direction you are facing; now you are pointing yo
      • by sjames ( 1099 ) on Saturday May 08, 2010 @04:01PM (#32141018) Homepage Journal

        So, at what point do you projectile vomit on the priest?

        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by davester666 ( 731373 )

          Whenever the priest is inline with whatever direction your head happens to be facing, same as always...

    • iPhone app cures certain types of vertigo?

      You're pulling my leg. I'm not going to fall for that.

      Of course it cures vertigo, Steve Jobs invented it! I'm just surprised that no one has come up with an app for walking on water or curing Cancer.

      It is way better than the farting apps though.

    • Believe it, bubba!!! I was suffering badly from BPPV when this was invented, and it flat cured me. If you haven't thrown up violently for two or three hours, every time you moved your head, you've really missed something. It's from calcium particles banging around in your delicate little sensing tips in the semicircular canals. The Epley procedure allows them to trickle into a place where they get stuck and don't annoy the balance whiskers. I might just buy an iPhone for this. I've had the YouTube for t
  • Sounds like a job for an iPod touch, not an iPhone.

    A great use for a 200 dollar piece of equipment that has no contract.

    Hey Goole, can you give us a variety of contract-free touch-like devices?

    • I'm assuming that the App would work on the iPod Touch since it too uses the iPhone OS. I'm guessing that the story name stems from this fact. If the device came out for the Droid or Nexus One, the story name would have probably been "Android App Helps To Cure Vertigo." I can see how the device and the operating system sharing the same name might be confusing.
      • Yeah, it's just a pet peeve of mine. One of the reasons why the the iphone OS is making inroads into all of these niche areas is the availability of cheap contract-free iPod touch devices. As a developer this makes a lot of sense.

        From a marketing perspective, however, it is much more attractive to put out devices that require phone contracts, because it's a long-term revenue stream.

        If google really wants to grow android market share, they have to address this need, or force their partners to address it.

        I r

        • One of the reasons why the the iphone OS is making inroads into all of these niche areas is the availability of cheap contract-free iPod touch devices.

          Nokia started with non-phones, the Nokia 770 and 800, resulting in all manner of apps for Maemo.

          • Interesting, but that's a whole different OS, not Android or iPhone.

            It looks like they may have been ahead of their time in some ways, but I don't see a huge ground swell of development (400 people at the 2009 developer's conference?).

            Is there a future in Maemo? Or will Nokia just switch to Android?

        • by RDW ( 41497 )

          Some of Google's partners have addressed this need by making Android phones that are cheaper than the iTouch (I'm posting this on one). Phone chips aren't expensive. Apple maintains an artificial price differential between the iTouch and the iPhone (where PAYG or unlocked units are available) for marketing reasons.

  • ...when a perpetuum mobile is finally invented, it will run on an iPhone.
  • The Game []
  • I suffer from BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo) and I'd probably have to' win the game' about thirty times before I actually managed to get the calcium inner ear weights to get back into their proper positions.

    I don't need a device to tell me my vertigo is cured, as the device can't understand what I'm feeling at the exact moment. Also, a cure implies it should never occur ever again. Guess what I have to do nearly on a weekly basis?

    • Cure does not imply permanence or preventative nature. That is your own misunderstanding of the word.

    • Maybe you have to do it 30 times because you're not doing it right? In which case $15 on this app would be the best money you ever spent.

      (Assuming the app is all it's cracked up to be.)

      • by Khyber ( 864651 )

        You can't do it right the first time, there are multiple calcium deposits in your inner ear that act as balance weights. Almost all of mine are loose and it takes about 45 minutes to get them back into the right position (outside of the semicircular canals.)

    • I feel for you.
      I suffer from tiredness related vertigo and BPPV by self diagnosis. and when it hits it's really annoying, and can last upto days. Sometimes going to certain positions seems to cure it however for months, and first time it started from a bad position: I was leaning forwards all the way from my chair to floor to fiddle with computer innards and a bad dizziness struck. It lasted for weeks, until i was again leaning forwards adjusting carburators on my car for idle speed. But always tiredness ha

  • A bit misleading.. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Trecares ( 416205 ) on Saturday May 08, 2010 @02:12PM (#32140242)

    While the Epley maneuver is effective, it does not actually cure the problem. The problem is that sometimes particles form in the inner ear and can disturb the nerves that senses changes in balance. The maneuver only moves them to a different location where they don't cause problems. The particles are still there. They occasionally can get back into a place where they can cause problems. I've had it for 10 years and it comes and goes. However, it still is better than nothing.

    • I think I have it, mildly.

      When I'm not 100% awake (ie, less than 8 hours rest) I'll feel like things are moving when they are not, and have some subtle balance problems. This comes and goes. I think I'm just good at dealing with it. That I lack the nausea component of motion sickness etc, I think lends to my supposition that I'm just good at dealing with it :). I get the sensation that I'm floating or in a state of lower gravity (like when driving over a crest of a hill, except not in the gut, and it lasts

      • Why would you think that the position of particles in your inner ear are somehow related to the amount of sleep you get?
        • I don't. I think my ability to 'compensate' or ignore it is.

          Just like I feel pain more sharply when tired, or when uncorrected my astigmatism is much more noticeable.

          • That actually makes sense. It's a shame, really...I had a snarky comment that would make me look superior all lined up. Ye /. gods, why hast thou forsaken me?!?!


    • Actually, the Epley maneuver is about 95% effective in treating BPPV ( [] ) and in many patients it is a permanent cure (the recurrence rate is 10-25% - []). The fact that for you it is not so, does not mean no one will benefit from it. P.S. You do not need to move the Calcium particles back to their original place for the maneuver to be considered a cure. Having them someplace "out of the way" is enough.
  • Come on... You gotta have a bigger view of the things around you than that.

  • I had this problem and was told by my ENT to (1) sit in the middle of my couch (2) lean to the right till my head touched the arm (3) look up to my left (4) sit up straight (5) lean to the left till my head touched the arm (6) look up to the right (7) sit up straight. Repeat several times. Worked for me.
  • by KharmaWidow ( 1504025 ) on Saturday May 08, 2010 @03:28PM (#32140826)

    Doctors are putting a cell phone that causes nearly all my other gadgets to buzz next to the developing brain of a child?

    • Because, were it not for this app, of course children wouldn't do something as dangerous as putting mobile phones to their heads.

      Still, not to worry, you could always wrap the childs head in tin foil first.

      • "children put a cell phone to their heads, themselves"

        Regardless if a child does something, how does that justify what a doctor does?

        If we were to apply the logic of what you just said, you are saying its OK for a doctor to put a child's hand in a light-socket because a child is likely to do it themselves. That's nonsense.

  • by Alsee ( 515537 ) on Saturday May 08, 2010 @05:41PM (#32141788) Homepage

    an iPhone app to cure the most common cases of vertigo, which about 300,000 Canadians develop annually.



  • ... there was a cure for the brain tumors that result from strapping a cell phone to people's heads. iPod Touch anyone?
  • Im working on an iPhone app that cures bowel cancer, just shove said iPhone up your ass while watching Oprah and the little cancer critters will run away.
  • Is there really any scientific proof on this? There are so many apps that don't work-not too sure about this one. []

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