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Investigation of self-reported dizziness in the elderly when lying down or turning over in bed, and possible benign paroxysmal positional vertigo

Journal article
Authors Ellen Lindell
Therese Karlsson
Mia Johansson
M. Magnusson
Caterina Finizia
Published in Journal of Laryngology and Otology
Volume 133
Issue 4
Pages 275-280
ISSN 0022-2151
Publication year 2019
Published at Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Oncology
Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Otorhinolaryngology
Pages 275-280
Language en
Keywords Aged, Aged, 80 And Over, Dizziness, Questionnaires, Vertigo
Subject categories Gerontology, specializing in Medical and Health Sciences, Otorhinolaryngology


ObjectivesThis study aimed to investigate the rate of dizziness and occurrence of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo in the elderly by physical examination in those reporting dizziness symptoms when lying down or turning over in bed.MethodsA total of 498 people, aged 70-85 years, were asked to complete a questionnaire regarding dizziness symptoms. Subjects answering that they became dizzy in bed were asked to participate in a physical examination and diagnostic manoeuvres investigating benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.ResultsA total of 324 participants (65 per cent) completed the questionnaire. More than one-quarter (29 per cent) reported dizziness and 32 (10 per cent) reported dizziness when turning in bed. Of these 32 persons, 22 (69 per cent) underwent a physical examination. Six participants tested positive for benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.ConclusionTen per cent of the elderly participants reported positional symptoms, and 6 out of 22 fulfilled diagnostic criteria for benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. Furthermore, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo was established despite a delay between questionnaire completion and investigation, emphasising that this type of dizziness may not be a self-limiting disorder. © JLO (1984) Limited, 2019.

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