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Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy

What is vestibular rehabilitation therapy?

Vestibular rehabilitation therapy is physical therapy performed for vestibular and balance impairments. It is an exercise-based program designed to help the nervous system compensate for inner ear deficits. If you experience dizziness, vertigo, or disequilibrium, you may be a good candidate for vestibular rehab. Some symptoms can be cured whereas others can only be managed with a vestibular rehab program.  Greendale Physical Therapy offers vestibular rehabilitation at all of our Massachusetts clinics.

What are the symptoms of vestibular dysfunction?

Some common symptoms of vestibular dysfunction are vertigo (aspinning or whirling sensation), imbalance or unsteadiness, dizziness (a lightheaded, floating, or rocking sensation), nausea, blurred or bouncing vision, problems with coordination, thinking, and memory. Those symptoms may range from mild (only lasting a few seconds), to severe (sometimes resulting in total disability).

What causes of vestibular dysfunction?

There are both vestibular and non-vestibular causes of dizziness. Vestibular causes of dizziness include but are not limited to bacterial or viral infections, acoustic neuroma, autoimmune inner ear disease, migraines, ototoxicity, head trauma, whiplash, advancing age, cervicogenic dizziness, and otosclerosis. Some non-vestibular causes of dizziness include orthostatic hypotension, arrhythmia, embolism, hyperventilation, aneurysm, atherosclerosis, carotid sinus reflex, dehydration, certain medications, and nervous system disorders (MS, peripheral neuropathies).

What is Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)?

BPPV is the most common cause of vertigo. It is caused when loose debris (otoconia) collects in the semicircular canals of the inner ear. The misplacement of the crystals sends false information to the brain. A few causes of BPPV include head injury or degeneration of inner ear hair cells due to aging. Often BPPV can be relieved by canalith repositioning procedures, which are a series of head positions and changes in body positions to reposition the crystals in the proper place.

What should a patient do if he/she experiences any of these symptoms?

In order to diagnose a vestibular disorder, the patient should get a physical exam that includes a complete history and a combination of tests. It is essential to rule out other causes, such as a cardiovascular, visual, or neurological disorder. In some instances, the patient may be referred to a specialist (like an ENT/otolaryngologist, otologist, or neurotologist).

Contact us to get started

You don’t have to wait for your doctor to provide you with a referral. You can reach out to our office to make an appointment right now, and we’ll work with your insurance company.

Contact Greendale Physical Therapy today to discuss your needs and goals.  We have 4 convenient locations, in ShrewsburyWorcesterClinton, and Marlborough.

Greendale Physical Therapy, LLC helped me regain the strength in my ankles and feet to keep me walking and continue to exercise and golf. The staff are all well skilled, pleasant, and supportive. I would highly recommend them to my friends for PT. They are a great group!

Clinton Patient

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Shrewsbury Clinic

280 Boston Turnpike
Shrewsbury, MA 01545

T: 508-753-7780
F: 508-459-5900

Worcester Clinic

120 Gold Star Boulevard
Worcester, MA 01545

T: 508-459-5000
F: 508-459-5900

Clinton Clinic

145 Church Street
Clinton, MA 01510

T: 978-598-3155
F: 508-459-5900