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Pediatric Physical Therapy:
doi: 10.1097/PEP.0000000000000039
Research Article

Reliability and Diagnostic Accuracy of Clinical Tests of Vestibular Function for Children

Christy, Jennifer B. PT, PhD; Payne, JoAnne MA, CCC-A; Azuero, Andres PhD, MBA; Formby, Craig PhD

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Abstract

Purpose:

To determine reliability, diagnostic values, and minimal detectable change scores, 90% confidence (MDC90) of pediatric clinical tests of vestibular function.

Methods:

Twenty children with severe to profound bilateral sensorineural hearing loss and 23 children with typical development, aged 6 to 12 years, participated. The Head Thrust Test, Emory Clinical Vestibular Chair Test, Bucket Test, Dynamic Visual Acuity, Modified Clinical Test of Sensory Interaction on Balance, and Sensory Organization Test were completed twice for reliability. Reference standard diagnostic tests were rotary chair and vestibular evoked myogenic potential. Reliability, sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, likelihood ratios, and MDC90 scores were calculated.

Results:

Reliability ranged from an intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.73 to 0.95. Sensitivity, specificity, and predictive values, using cutoff scores for each test representing the largest area under the curve, ranged from 63% to 100%. The MDC90 for Dynamic Visual Acuity and Modified Clinical Test of Sensory Interaction on Balance were 8 optotypes and 16.75 seconds, respectively.

Conclusions:

Clinical tests can be used accurately to identify children with vestibular hypofunction.

© 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins and Section on Pediatrics of the American Physical Therapy Association

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