Posts Tagged ‘labyrinthitis’

4/17/10: Support Group for Dizzy and Inner Ear Balance Disorders

Join us on Saturday, April 17th for our Vestibular Support Group, for individuals with dizziness, vertigo, or balance issues. This support group is set up as an open forum to meet other individuals in the community with vestibular disorders. We will also have Physical Therapists certified in vestibular rehabilitation available to answer any questions you may have about vestibular disorders or therapy.

We have a special guest speaker who will teach us how Tai Chi benefits individuals with dizziness and balance disorders as well as some basic moves.

If you are affected or have been affected by any of the following, please consider joining us:

  • BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo)
  • Peripheral or central vestibulopathy
  • Vestibular migraine
  • Meniere’s Disease
  • Labrynthitis
  • Tinnitus

We would love all of those affected by vestibular disorders to join us! Friends and family, as well as other support systems, are  welcome.

Where: 3130 N Lincoln Avenue in Chicago, IL (60657).

When: Refreshments will be served at 11:30am. The meeting will begin at 12pm and will last for approximately one hour.

To RSVP, please call: 773-525-5200.

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Spring 2010 Vestibular Support Group

Join us on Saturday, April 17th for our Vestibular Support Group, located at our office at 3130 N Lincoln Avenue in Chicago, IL (60657). Refreshments will be served at 11:30am and the meeting will begin at 12pm and will last for approximately one hour.

We would love all of those affected by vestibular disorders to join us! Friends and family, as well as other support systems, are  welcome.

To RSVP, please call: 773-525-5200.

If You Are Dizzy…

…Keep moving!

It will be very difficult for dizzy patients to hear that they should keep doing their daily activities when their symptoms flare up. Their first instinct is to become inactive and take rest days. What will help your vestibular system is to rest until your symptoms settle down and then go back to your normal activities.

When you become active, you are training your brain to get used to different incoming signals. This in conjunction with daily vestibular exercises will help with rehabilitation of your vestibular system.

February Vestibular Support Group Coming Soon!

Just a heads up, the next Vestibular Support Group will be taking place in February. Details will be announced soon!

Testing and Evaluating Your Dizziness

Every therapist who tests people for balance disorders and dizziness will use similar tests. Here are four examples of the tests that are used, which may include additional explanation if there’s an abundance of scientific terms. Explanations/definitions are in italics and I have edited the copy for better reading comprehension.

Oculomotor examination

Assess for an internuclear ophthalmoplegia [eye weakness] and gaze-dependent nystagmus [involuntary movement in the eye that indicates neurological abnormality]. Nystagmus of peripheral [inner ear] origin typically is unidirectional. Nystagmus of brainstem or cerebellar (ie. central) origin may be bidirectional and have more than one direction. Pure vertical nystagmus almost always is a sign of brainstem disease and not a labyrinthine [inner ear] disorder.

Station (Romberg)

The…Romberg test is having the patient stand heel to toe with 1 foot in front of the other; this test is required to detect abnormalities in younger patients.

Fukuda test (stepping test of Unterberger)

The patient is asked to step in place for 20-30 seconds. Rotation of the patient may indicate a unilateral loss of vestibular tone.

Dix-Hallpike maneuver

The Dix-Hallpike maneuver is one of the most important tests for patients who experience true vertigo. This test involves having the patient lie back suddenly with the head turned to one side. The test results are considered abnormal if the patient reports vertigo and exhibits a characteristic torsional (ie. rotary) nystagmus that starts a few seconds after the patient lies back (latency), lasts 40-60 seconds, reverses when the patient sits up, and fatigues with repetition.

For more information and more tests:

http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/856440-overview

During Therapy: Why You May STILL Feel Dizzy!

There is a good chance that during vestibular rehabilitation therapy you may still feel dizzy. The vestibular system tells your brain where your head is in space (up, down, left…). When the vestibular system is weakened, in an accident or after being sick, the vestibular system has a hard time figuring out where your head is located in space, causing you to be off balance.

During vestibular rehabiliation therapy, you are doing exercises that are intentionally making you dizzy. Exercises that include moving the head left to right while focusing on a steady object is one example. By focusing on a still object while moving your head left to right, you are re-training the brain to coordinate the information between the senses and the vestibular system so that signals are sent correctly to the brain.

Your exercises will get increasingly hard as you progress through your therapy and your symptoms may flare up because your brain will not be used to the increase in difficulty (ie. new visual cues). Do not despair, this happens to some of our patients!

How do you combat this dizziness: Do your exercises at home that your physical therapist provides you with. It will really help you with your dizziness!

Dr. Hain and the 3rd Vestibular Support Group

Our most recent Vestibular Support Group, held at LifeStyle’s office in Chicago, increased in attendance and we had our first guest speaker, Dr. Timothy Hain. Chicago’s “dizzy doctor”, as many patients call him, is a neurologist with Chicago Dizziness and Hearing as well as a Professor of Neurology and Otolaryngology at Northwestern University Medical School.

Dr. Hain began his discussion with an overview of the different definitions of dizziness and the reasons for dizziness. Patients go to doctors for many reasons and use the term “dizziness” and it could refer to many things, whether it’s vertigo, or a sensation of motion, ataxia, an unsteadiness, or lightheadedness/faintness.

dizzyAlmost 50% of dizziness stems from your ear, but that means that about 50% of dizziness stems from something else (including brain trauma, psychological reasons, and other medical reasons).

Dr. Hain then gave an overview of BPPV, Meniere’s disease, vestibular neuritis and bilateral vestibular loss. He gave great insight and even case examples about the different vestibular disorders. Dr. Hain discussed studies that are being conducted on mice (no humans yet) to regenerate damaged, non-working hair cells within ones ear – which are the cells that are the sensory receptors for the vestibular system – humans are not able to regenerate damanged cells while birds are able to.

Dr. Hain also discussed the use of Betahistine in the treatment of Meniere’s Disease – while not FDA legal in the US, the Europeans widely use the product. For an overview and Dr. Hain’s review of the drug, please go to: http://www.dizziness-and-balance.com/treatment/serc.html

For more information on Chicago’s VSG, please send an email to: info@balancechicago.com.