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Balance System

Balance System

The vestibular system is a portion of the ear responsible for the sense of balance. Damage to its mechanism may result in a range of symptoms including:

  •     Dizziness or Vertigo (a spinning sensation)
  •     Visual disturbances such as blurred vision when moving your head
  •     Unsteadiness and difficulty walking
  •     Increased incidence of falls and other accidents

 

VNG firewire PR photo

Balance Assessment

Balance assessments are non-invasive procedure that assessing the integrity of the balance system. It takes about half an hour to complete each of the tests. The function of the balance system is recorded through eye movements and muscle neck activity. Most of the time, patient wears a pair of goggles, which holds a camera to track the movements of the eyes.

Test of balance available at our clinic are Videonystagmography (VNG), Caloric test, Rotary chair test, and Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potentials (VEMPs).

Caloric testing

The basis for caloric testing is the establishment of the thermal gradient across horizontal semicircular canals, which is the balance organ in our inner ear. By positioning the patient in such way that the horizontal semicircular canal lies in the vertical plan to induce a change in activity in balance nerve. It delivered caloric stimulus into the external ear canal using either air or water. Involuntary eye movement induce by this test will be analyzed.

Rotational testing

Relies on natural stimulation of the angular acceleration. Subjects sit on the computer-controlled chair and is turned left and right in prescribed fashion. Assessment is accomplished by rotating the patient with the eyes open in the dark.

VEMP

Refer to electrical activity recorded from neck muscles in response to intense clicks sounds. It reflects stimulation of the saccule unilaterally and thus provide information about the integrity of the balance organ and balance nerve on the tested side.

VNG

VNG consists of a series of tests designed to document the ability of a person to follow the movement of objects using eyes. Series of tests included in the VNG are spontaneous nystagmus test, gaze test, saccade test, optokinetic test and smooth Pursuit test.