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Expert Opinions

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I've been unable to find a product called Vertigoheel, which I've heard stops dizziness and other symptoms of vertigo. Can you help?

A.B. Owings Mills, MD
German researchers found that a vertigo remedy called Vertigoheel was at least as effective as a conventional drug in the treatment of vertigo (Archives of Otolaryngology, 8/898). What's more, it appeared to be a lot safer and is a lot cheaper than most prescription or over-the-counter drugs. But Vertigoheel is marketed to treat a specific medical condition, namely vertigo, and in the U.S. it requires a doctor's prescription, so you won't find it on the open shelves at pharmacies or health-food stores.

One way to get the product is to visit a homeopathic doctor. But for the many people who don't have ready access to a professional homeopath, public health expert Dana Ullman, M.P.H., owner and director of Homeopathic Educational Services in Berkeley, California, offers another option. He notes that Vertigoheel Inc., the German company that manufactures the product, makes the same formula under a different name, Cocculus compositum (or Cocculus comp) which is one of the key active ingredients. Cocculus comp is indicated for motion sickness, a complaint that doesn't require medical diagnosis or supervision, so it can be sold over the counter.

Homeopathic Educational Services (510-649-0294; www.homeopathic.com) is one of many places where Cocculus comp can be purchased. The recommended dose is 2 to 3 tablets under the tongue, three times a day.

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