Diagnostic Balance Testing
With such a wide range of hearing and balance disorders, many of which have similar symptoms, it’s important for an audiologist to make an accurate diagnosis to come up with a successful treatment plan. Diagnostic testing plays an important role in determining the condition responsible for a patient’s suffering.
Types of Diagnostic Tests
There are several diagnostic tests available, ranging from X-rays and CT scans to more in-depth tests. Here are some of the most common:
- Posturography. This balance test measures the effectiveness of the somatosensory system, vestibular system and vision to determine which area(s) to focus on when treating a balance disorder.
- Videonystagmography. This test measures eye movements to evaluate the inner ear and central motor functions. It can determine whether a vestibular disorder is the cause of a balance problem and where one or both ears are affected.
- Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potential (VEMP) Testing. This test stimulates the ear with a loud sound and measures a muscle response in the body. It helps to assess the vestibular nerve function.
- Rotary Chair (RC). This test measures the function of the vestibular system while the chair turns back and forth, putting the patient in motion.
These diagnostic tests are quick, painless and can help us diagnose and evaluate a variety of hearing and balance disorders.