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Dix-Hallpike Test for Vertigo

Dix-Hallpike test for vertigo

For this test, you are seated on an exam table. The doctor may ask you to look at his or her nose the whole time the test is done.

  1. The doctor first turns your head to one side and then lowers your head to the table.
  2. The doctor watches your eyes for nystagmus. Nystagmus is a rapid, rhythmic movement of the eyes.
    • If you get dizzy and the doctor sees nystagmus, then the doctor knows that the ear pointed to the floor is the affected ear.
    • If the doctor does not see nystagmus, he or she repeats steps 1 and 2 on the other side to check your other ear.
    The timing of the onset of dizziness helps the doctor locate the cause of the dizziness or vertigo.
  3. The doctor then helps you back to the upright position.
By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Last Revised December 19, 2012

Last Revised: December 19, 2012

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine

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