What is Vestibular Dysfunction?

The National Institute of Health notes 40-50% of people over 40 years old experience dizziness or balance problems at some point in their life. Balance related falls account for 50% of accidental deaths in the population over 65 years. Of all falls suffered by the elderly, 50% can be attributed to some degree of vestibular dysfunction. The most frequent symptoms reported from vestibular dysfunction are dizziness, unsteadiness, vertigo, nausea, or Imbalance when walking. Vestibular disorders may also lead to headaches, muscular aches in the back and neck, motion sickness, and increased sensitivity to noise and bright lights. Depression is a common complaint due to the disabling symptoms of vestibular dysfunctions.

TERMINOLOGY

Dizziness:
Non-specific term that describes altered orientation in space.
Dysequilibrium:
A sense of imbalance without vertigo.
Vertigo:
A false sensation or illusion of movement of either the body or environment.
Cervicogenic Headache:
Headaches occurring from musculoskeletal disorders of the cervical spine.
BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo):
The most common cause of recurrent peripheral vertigo. Brief episodes of vertigo occur with changes in head position.

 

Lafayette Rehabilitation Services has two therapists trained to evaluate and treat patients suffering from any of these issues. If you suffer from any of these symptoms, please call Lafayette Rehabilitation, 447-5552, for more information.

LRS Therapists that have received additional training in Vestibular Rehabilitation:
Marianne Fleming, PT
Gail Dodge, PT