Vestibular and Fall Prevention

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Vestibular Therapy (Balance) 
What is a vestibular disorder?
Vestibular dysfunction affects approximately 35% of adults aged 40 years or older in the United States. The disorder develops when the vestibular system, made up of the inner ear and brain (which help control balance and eye movements) is damaged by disease, aging, or injury.

Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT)
VRT is an exercise-based program designed to promote central nervous system compensation for inner ear problems. Physical therapy can help vestibular patients in a variety of ways by:

  • Decreasing the risk of falling 
  • Decreasing intensity and/ or episodes of vertigo/dizziness 
  • Improving balance and ambulation 
  • Improving eye-hand coordination
  • Improve overall endurance and muscle strengthening
  • Substitution and coping skills


Vestibular therapy can treat:

  • Abnormal Gait
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Acoustic Neuroma
  • Parkinson's Disease
  • Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)
  • Post-Concussion Syndrome
  • Labyrinthitis
  • Vestibular Neuritis
  • Migraine Related Motion Sickness
  • Vestibular Weakness
  • Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

Vertigo was a crippling condition for Tricia Jeffery. Physical therapy treatment at St. Luke’s University Health Network allowed her to get her life back. Watch Kristen Topping, PT, DPT and ENT Specialist, Dr. David Yen discuss balance disorders and various options for relief.

Specialized equipment assists our therapists in providing the best possible care!
In order to reduce the risk of falling and increase activity levels among adults, we use the Biodex Balance System™ SD and the NeuroCom® SMART Balance Master® as part of our comprehensive therapy program. The Biodex Balance System ™ SD can identify a potential problem in just two minutes with its fast and accurate balance assessment. The NeuroCom® SMART Balance Master® is used by NASA to help measure shuttle crews’ equilibrium and assess and retrain sensory and motor balance. It provides interactive, functional training exercises using biofeedback, coupled with sensitive, real-time monitoring of movement. These medical devices provide quick detection, allowing our therapists to start designing a specialized treatment plan for you and your loved ones as soon as possible.