Research has found that taking a vitamin D and calcium supplement twice daily could help reduce the chances of recurrence of vertigo. The research indicates that for individuals having benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, supplementing with vitamin D and calcium is an easy, low-risk means for preventing the recurrence of vertigo. It’s particularly effective for individuals who have low levels of vitamin D in the first place.
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo is one of the most common forms of vertigo and occurs if a change in position of the head results in an abrupt spinning sensation. Treatment consists of a physician carrying out a number of head movements which shifts ear particles that result in vertigo. The condition however has a tendency to often reoccur, and approximately 86 percent of individuals with this type of vertigo report that it results in interruptions in daily life or missing days at work.
The researchers investigated 957 individuals having benign paroxysmal positional vertigo who had been successfully treated with the head movement therapy. The study participants were divided into 2 groups, an intervention group and an observation group.
The 445 intervention group individuals had their levels of vitamin D measured at the beginning of the study. The 348 individuals who had levels of vitamin D less than 20 nanograms per milliliter were given supplements containing 400 IUs of vitamin D and 500 mgs of calcium twice a day, while individuals having levels of vitamin D equal to or more than 20 ng/mL weren’t given the supplements.
The 512 observation group individuals didn’t have their vitamin D levels checked and they didn’t receive the supplements.
Individuals in the intervention group taking the supplements experienced a lower vertigo episode recurrence rate after an average of 1 year in comparison to individuals in the observation group. Individuals who took the supplements experienced an average rate of recurrence of 0.83 times per person-year, in comparison to 1.10 times per person-year for the observation group individuals, or a 24 percent reduction in recurrence rate annually.
There seemed to be more benefit for individuals with a higher vitamin D deficiency in the beginning of the study. Individuals starting with levels of vitamin D less than 10 ng/mL had a 45 percent annual recurrence rate reduction, and individuals who started with levels of vitamin D at 10 to 20 ng/mL had only a 14 percent reduction in the annual recurrence rate. A total of 38 percent of the interventional group individuals experienced another vertigo episode, in comparison to 47 percent of individuals in the observation group.
The study suggests a cost-effective, low-risk treatment such as vitamin D and calcium supplements could be helpful for the prevention of this common, as well as commonly recurring, disorder.
The fact that the entire study was not completed by quite a few of the study participants was a limitation of the study, with more individuals from the intervention group quitting the study compared to the observation group.
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