Skip to site alertSkip to content

Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)

Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)

Ear anatomy, showing detail of inner ear and semicircular canals, with close-up of stones in canal.

Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is caused by a problem in the inner ear. Tiny calcium "stones" inside your inner ear help you keep your balance. Sometimes these stones move into an area of your inner ear called the semicircular canal. When you move your head in certain ways, the stones in your semicircular canal move. Sensors in the semicircular canal are triggered by the stones, which causes a feeling of spinning.

Current as of: September 27, 2023

Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board
All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.