Empower PT and Fitness_Vestibular Rehabilitation

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One of the most common concerns in patients with dizziness and vertigo who complete a vestibular rehabilitation program is, “Will my results last?” Researchsuggests that,with theproperpost-therpayexercise,patientswho successfully complete vestibular rehab will maintain their positive results long after leaving a physical therapist’s office. What Happens Next? Theaimofvestibularrehab is to improvefunctionandbalancewhilereducing dizziness. This is especially important in older patients who already bear a higherriskoffallsasaresultofage-relatedneuropathy,vestibulardysfunction and a host of other conditions. As a result, those who have experienced a positive outcome as a result of vestibular rehab are often reluctant to leave the care of clinicians. To assuage this anxiety and extend the outcome of rehab,physicaltherapistswilloftenprescribeahome-basedexerciseprogram that reinforces therapeutic processes. The Mode Doesn’t Matter Inastudypublished inRehabilitationResearchandPractice,elderlypatients who completed vestibular rehabilitation were randomly assigned a print- basedexerciseprogramoracomputer-basedexerciseprogram todetermine

which mode helped patients preserve function, reduced dizziness and improved the patient’s quality of life. Patient compliance was equivalent in both modes and patients achieved no noticeable differences in outcomes. What researchersdidobservewas thatanat-homeexerciseprogram isvital to the patient’s quality of life three months after being discharged from the hospital or other therapeutic setting. Patient Outcomes Don’t Improve On Their Own Bottom line, patients who are experiencing dizziness and vertigo will not experience improvementwithout intervention.This isespeciallytrue inelderly patientswhosefunctionaloutcomesarevital to theirqualityof life.Vestibular rehabilitationasperformedbyaphysical therapist is themosteffectiveway of providing these outcomes and a home-based exercise program upon release from physical therapy is the best way to maintain them over time. Now is the time to consider physical therapy for elderly patients who are experiencing vertigo and dizziness. Not only will vestibular rehabilitation in particular improve their balance and gait, it will provide them with lasting results that will impact their quality of life long-term.



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