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Iran Red Crescent Med J. 2012 Nov;14(11):705-8. doi: 10.5812/ircmj.3507. Epub 2012 Nov 15.

Vestibular rehabilitation outcomes in the elderly with chronic vestibular dysfunction.

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Department of Audiology, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.



Chronic vestibular dysfunction is a frustrating problem in the elderly and can have a tremendous impact on their life, but only a few studies are available. Vestibular rehabilitation therapy (VRT) is an important therapeutic option for the neuro-otologist in treating patients with significant balance deficits.


The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of vestibular rehabilitation on dizziness in elderly patients with chronic vestibular dysfunction.


A total of 33 patients older than 60 years with chronic vestibular dysfunction were studied. Clinical and objective vestibular tests including videonystagmography (VNG) and dizziness handicap inventory (DHI) were carried out at their first visit, 2 weeks, and 8 weeks post-VRT. The VRT exercises were performed according to Cawthorne and Cooksey protocols.


Oculomotor assessments were within normal limits in all patients. Nineteen patients (57.57%) showed abnormal canal paralysis on caloric testing which at follow-up sessions; CP values were decreased remarkably after VRT exercises. We found a significant improvement between pre-VRT and post-VRT total DHI scores (P < 0.001). This improvement was most prominent in functional subscore.


Our study demonstrated that VRT is an effective therapeutic method for elderly patients with chronic vestibular dysfunction.


Chronic Vestibular Dysfunction; Dizziness; Handicap Inventory; Vestibular Rehabilitation

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