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THE ROLE OF TECHNOLOGY

Chronic balance and dizziness disorders can be effectively managed and positive functional outcomes in this challenging patient population are attainable with proper diagnoses. The key is accurate information from the outset that includes the diagnosis of pathology, as well as critical assessments of impairments and functional limitations.

Studies have shown that treatment based on pathology alone may not result in resolution of a patient's disorder.1, 2 A clinician may know that an individual has a balance disorder through clinical observation alone or through the diagnosis of pathology. For those patients who have demonstrated balance problems, however, effective treatment requires a targeted approach focusing on the specific underlying sensory and motor impairments, as well as the resultant functional limitations. Clinical observation alone cannot differentiate among the various sensory and motor impairments underlying a patient's balance problem. The appropriate technology can provide this precise data and complete the clinical picture of the balance-impaired patient.

The following pages discuss the minimum standards required for the objective quantification of balance and mobility disorders, as well as the role the information provided plays in clinical decision-making, and how the right technology can enhance your clinic's business.

References:
  1. Black FO, Angel CR, Pesznecker SC, Gianna C (2000). Outcome analysis of individualized vestibular rehabilitation protocols. American J Otology 21:543-551.
  2. Calder JH, Jacobson GP (2000). Acquired bilateral peripheral vestibular system impairment: rehabilitative options and potential outcomes. J American Academy of Audiology 11:514-521.