Date of Award

2001

Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Physical Therapy (MPT)

Department

Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Thomas Mohr

Keywords

Dizziness; Vestibular Diseases -- rehabilitation

Abstract

When individuals have an insult to the vestibular system they often experience symptoms including vertigo, decreased static and dynamic balance, and a decreased ability to participate in activities of daily living. The Dizziness Handicap Inventory (DHI) is a "dizzy-specific" questionnaire that was developed in 1990 to measure how dizziness and imbalance affect an individual's quality of life. It is an assessment tool, made up of physical, emotional, and functional sub-scales, that has reliability and is easy to administer and score. The purpose of this study was to measure the effectiveness of a vestibular rehabilitation program, using the Dizziness Handicap Inventory, in subjects who had mixed vestibular disorders. Forty-nine randomly selected subjects participated in a telephone survey, using the Dizziness Handicap Inventory, to compare how they felt before and after their vestibular rehabilitation program. Total scores and sub-scores before and after vestibular rehabilitation were calculated and compared, using the sign test, with the alpha level set at .05. Results showed that 57.1 % of the subjects interviewed had significant improvements in their total DHI scores following vestibular rehabilitation. Statistically significant differences in each of the individual sub-scores before and after vestibular rehabilitation was also found to be present (p<.001). Overall, this study demonstrates the benefits that an organized vestibular rehabilitation program can have for patients with mixed vestibular deficits, and how the Dizziness Handicap Inventory can be utilized in the assessment of outcomes.

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