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Benign Paroxymal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)

I recently experienced severe vertigo and diagnosed myself as having Benign Paraoxymal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) because my symptoms were just like my brother’s and that was his diagnosis.  Don’t worry!  I also went to a doctor and received a tentative (pending more testing) diagnosis of BPPV.  For you San Diego folks, I highly recommend Dr. Ian Purcell, an otoneurologist, (or his associates) at the Senta Medical Clinic at Alvarado Hospital.  He and Dr. Michael O’Leary were featured on The Doctor’s television show.

Dr. Purcell’s office has one of only 6 treatment chairs in the country.  Here I am all strapped in!  The chair is used for diagnosis and for treatment.  They rolled me this way and that and a camera in the goggles recorded my eye movements, looking for nystagmus.  Such fun!

BPPV Testing

What does this have to do with hearing loss?  Maybe nothing.  Most of the articles I read said there was no connection between hearing loss and BPPV but a few said it could be caused by Meniere’s Disease.  The symptoms and causes of dizziness in Meniere’s Disease are different than the vertigo caused by BPPV.  Vertigo caused by BPPV is “positional” and the treatment involves exercises such as the Epley Maneuver.   However, it’s all in the inner ear, so I thought this would be important information to share.  If you have been diagnosed with BPPV, I’d love to hear from you!

 

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Cochlear Nucleus Hybrid Implant System – NEW!

This is a totally new hearing loss solution and I’m surprised I haven’t heard more about it in the media!  The Cochlear Nucleus Hybrid Implant System received FDA approval on March 20, 2014.  Previously, cochlear implants (CI’s) were ONLY for people with a profound hearing loss.  The insertion of the CI damaged any residual hearing in the implanted ear, and the patient would become completely deaf in that ear when not wearing the CI processor.  Now Cochlear Americas has developed an implant that preserves hearing in the low frequencies!

The Nucleus Hybrid Implant System has 3 components – the Hybrid L24 Implant, the sound processor, and the built-in acoustic component that amplifies the lower frequency sounds.

Microsoft Word - P130016_Nucleus Hybrid™ L24 (approved).doc

The Hybrid L24 Implant is designed for people with high-frequency hearing loss who may have good low-frequency hearing. It incorporates a specialized electrode, which is shorter and thinner than a standard cochlear implant and is designed to stimulate the high frequencies while preserving your existing low-frequency hearing.

The Nucleus Hybrid Implant System is covered by most insurance plans, Medicare and typically Medicaid.

For more information, see this Fact Sheet and the Cochlear Americas website.