Betahistine in the Treatment of Peripheral Vestibular Vertigo: Results of a Real-Life Study in Primary Care

Guillermo Sanchez-Vanegas, Carlos Castro-Moreno, Diana Buitrago

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5 Scopus citations


The present research was carried out with the objective to establish the clinical effect and safety of betahistine (48 mg daily), for the management of peripheral vestibular vertigo, in patients treated by primary care physicians in Colombia. An observational prospective cohort study was conducted including patients older than 15 years with clinical diagnosis of peripheral vestibular vertigo who were candidates to be treated with betahistine (48 mg daily). A sample size of 150 individuals was calculated, and weekly follow-ups were planned for 12 weeks. Rotatory movement sensation, loss of balance, and global improvement scale from 0 to 100 points were evaluated. Complete improvement was defined when the patient reached a level of 100 points. We calculated average weekly improvement, cumulative incidence of complete improvement, incidence rate of complete improvement, and the probability of complete improvement as a function of time. After the first week, the average improvement was 56.6 points (95% confidence interval [CI]: 50.4-62.7). At the end of week 12, it was 89.3 points (95% CI: 86.5-92.2). Sixty-one percent of the patients had achieved complete improvement at the end of the second week. After the sixth week, the percentage of cumulative improvement was 72%, and after 12 weeks of follow-up, the cumulative incidence of complete improvement was 73% (95% CI: 65%-80%). Based on the follow-up times, a complete improvement incidence rate of 16 cases per 100 people/week was calculated (95% CI: 13-19). We concluded that Betahistine (48 mg daily) has a positive effect, controlling the symptoms associated with benign paroxysmal vertigo, with an adequate safety profile.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)356-360
Number of pages5
JournalEar, Nose and Throat Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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