By Rose Eveleth
Posting in Technology
Scientists measure the accuracy of YouTube vertigo treatment videos to find out the answer.
Admit it, you spend a lot of time watching silly YouTube videos - from the double rainbow guy to the prisoners dancing to Thriller. But there might be good news, YouTube might actually be good for something other than some laughs and a break from your real work. Watching YouTube videos might actually be a good treatment for vertigo.
Vertigo is a type of dizziness in which the person feels as though they're moving when they're really staying still. Turns out, it can be cured extremely easily using something called the Epley maneuver. The problem is, the Epley maneuver isn't common knowledge, and people often just wait and or try to take drugs to stop the vertigo.
So, what's the best way to teach people how to do things? YouTube, of course. Here's the most popular video of how to do the Epley maneuver:
The researchers dug through YouTube to find as many Epley demonstrations as they could, and then ranked them by accuracy. "It was good to see that the video with the most hits was the one developed by the American Academy of Neurology when it published its guideline recommending the use of the Epley maneuver in 2008 and then posted on YouTube by a lay person," Kevin Kerber, the study author, said in the press release. "But it was also good that the majority of the videos demonstrated the maneuver accurately."
But there is also an obvious danger in turning to YouTube, rather than a doctor for treatments. Would you trust a YouTuber to teach you how to do the heimlich? Maybe. What about how to stitch up a wound, or set a broken bone? Maybe not, but at least now you know where to go to find your vertigo treatments.
Image: thms.nl / Flickr
Jul 24, 2012