Physical therapy for persons with vestibular disorders : Current Opinion in Neurology

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NEURO-OPHTHALMOLOGY AND NEUROOTOLOGY: Edited by José-Alain Sahel and Joseph Furman

Physical therapy for persons with vestibular disorders

Whitney, Susan L.a,b; Alghwiri, Aliac; Alghadir, Ahmadb

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Current Opinion in Neurology 28(1):p 61-68, February 2015. | DOI: 10.1097/WCO.0000000000000162


Purpose of review 

Persons with vestibular disorders experience symptoms of dizziness and balance dysfunction, resulting in falls, as well as impairments of daily life. Various interventions provided by physical therapists have been shown to decrease dizziness and improve postural control. In the present review, we will focus on the role of physical therapy in the management of vestibular symptoms in patients with peripheral and central vestibular disorders.

Recent findings 

Persons with both acute and chronic central and peripheral vestibular disorders improve with vestibular rehabilitation. New interventions during the past 5 years have been designed to enhance recovery from problems with balance and dizziness. Examples include the use of virtual reality, vibrotactile feedback, optokinetic flow, YouTube videos, and innovative methods to change the gain of the vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR).


Patients with central and peripheral vestibular disorders benefit from physical therapy interventions. Advances in physical therapy interventions include new methods to stimulate adaptation of the VOR and the vestibulospinal systems.

Copyright © 2015 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights resereved.

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