Concurrent posterior semicircular canal benign paroxysmal positional vertigo in patients with ipsilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss: is it caused by otolith particles?

Chang-Hee Kim, Jung Eun Shin, Hong Ju Park, Ja-Won Koo, Jun Ho Lee
Medical Hypotheses 2014, 82 (4): 424-7
The etiology of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is still elusive even though detached otolith particles from the utricular macula are generally thought to be responsible for the pathogenesis of BPPV. Sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL), of which the etiology is also idiopathic in most cases, may accompany concurrent BPPV. This uncommon condition of concurrent BPPV with SSNHL has been assumptively explained as selective damage of the cochlea and the utricle due to viral neurolabyrinthitis. Recently, radiological evidences that inner ear hemorrhage is observed in patients with SSNHL accompanied by severe vertigo have been reported. The basic hypothesis for this study is that blood debris in the endolymphatic fluid due to inner ear hemorrhage is one of the causes of concurrent posterior semicircular canal (PSCC) BPPV in patient with ipsilateral SSNHL. In this report, we will outline the clinical findings of 4 patients with PSCC BPPV with SSNHL, and present an experimental results using whole blood in artificial endolymph to evaluate the hypothesis.

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