An analysis of vestibular evoked myogenic potentials in patients with benign paroxysmal positional vertigo

Sertac Yetiser, Dilay Ince, Murat Gul
Annals of Otology, Rhinology, and Laryngology 2014, 123 (10): 686-95

OBJECTIVE: Vestibular evoked myogenic potentials (VEMPs) selectively test the vestibular end-organ. The aim of this study was to analyze how the site of the diseased canal, type of particulate deposition, duration of symptoms, severity of nystagmus, recurrence, and age affect the VEMP in patients with benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).

METHODS: One hundred two patients were enrolled in the study between 2009 and 2012. There were 36 men and 66 women with ages ranging from 16 to 71 years (mean age, 42.28 ± 11.29 years). Patients with BPPV were tested with roll-on and head-hanging maneuvers under video-electronystagmography monitoring and with air conduction cervical VEMP testing. Patients were grouped for duration, severity, recurrence, age, site of canal involvement, and so on, and the results were compared in each subgroup. Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whitney U tests were used for the comparative analysis.

RESULTS: Twenty-four patients (23.5%) had a gross VEMP abnormality (absence of VEMP in 6 and greater than 25% depression of the amplitude in 18). Abnormality of VEMPs was not correlated with factors including age, severity of nystagmus, number of maneuvers applied, and the site of canal involvement (P < .05). However, persistence or recurrence of symptoms has an effect on VEMP results (P = .016).

CONCLUSION: Vestibular evoked myogenic potential is a useful tool to study the otolithic function in patients with BPPV and should be included in the test battery.

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