Patients experiencing vertigo--the feeling of dizziness or the perception the room is spinning--may have a condition of the inner ear called Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV). BPPV occurs when free floating carbonate crystals become inappropriately displaced in a canal of the inner ear. This situation can be treated effectively by a physical therapist using a single particle repositioning technique.
Other symptoms vestibular therapy can help include:
- Gait difficulty
- Persistent headache/neck pain
- Ringing in ears/hearing loss
Common vestibular diagnoses treated include:
- BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo)
- Central vestibular dysfunction (i.e. cerebellar ataxia)
- Unilateral vestibular hypofunction (i.e. Labyrinthitis – inner ear infection)
- Bilateral vestibular hypofunction
Treatments provided include:
For BPPV – canalith/particle repositioning.
For vestibular hypofunction – adaptation/habituation exercises, visual and balance retraining as well as posture stabilization exercises.
A typical outpatient will receive therapy 2-3 times a week for 4-6 weeks, unless the physical therapy evaluation determines otherwise.