HERMITAGE, Pennsylvania (WKBN) – If you find yourself stumbling, falling or just having all-around balance issues in your daily life, it might be time to get your ears and vision checked.
Dr. Michael Rairigh is a doctor of Audiology at Hermitage Audiology. He says if you are having balance issues, it may be time to get some tests done to see what is going on.
“When a patient comes in for an evaluation, we use computerized dynamic posturography. It’s a machine that allows us to identify the visual system, the somatosensory system and the vestibular system separately,” said Dr. Rairigh. “By testing those three systems, we are able to find out if a person is able to maintain their balance properly.”
A patient is placed into a harness to maintain stability and keep them from falling. A person will then have a visual test to ensure their visual system is running properly. Dr. Rairigh says if a person’s vision is off, they will feel dizzy and unbalanced.
Next, the patient stands on force plates on the floor that tilts back and forth. This test identifies if a person is able to catch themselves while falling or adapt to changing environments they are walking on. Lastly, the vestibular system is tested.
“The vestibular system is the balance system itself,” said Dr. Rairigh. “By using the first two tests and other tests specifically for the vestibular system, we can figure out if there is an issue with their balance system. We are one of the only clinics within 70 miles that is able to run this test.”
After the evaluation is completed, a comprehensive balance tool is created that identifies a patient’s specific issues therefore allowing a specific treatment plan to be created. The computerized dynamic posturography machine is also used for treatment to show the patient how they’re improving over time by comparing initial results to current ones.
Hermitage Audiology is located at 3135 Highland Road #B in Hermitage. Call (724) 347-2005 and visit them online at HermitageAudiologyPa.com.