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Research Article  |   September 1998
A Task for Assessing Vertigo Elicited by Repetitive Head Movements
Author Affiliations
  • Helen S. Cohen, EdD, OTR, FAOTA, is Assistant Professor, Bobby R. Alford Department of Otorhinolaryngology and Communicative Sciences, Baylor College of Medicine, One Baylor Plaza, Houston, Texas 77030
  • Jacob A. Gavia, is Student, Rice University, Houston, Texas. At me time of this study, he was Student, Stafford High School, Stafford, Texas, and Student Assistant, Bobby R. Alford Department of Otorhinolaryngology and Communicative Sciences, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas
Article Information
Research
Research Article   |   September 1998
A Task for Assessing Vertigo Elicited by Repetitive Head Movements
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, September 1998, Vol. 52, 644-649. doi:10.5014/ajot.52.8.644
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, September 1998, Vol. 52, 644-649. doi:10.5014/ajot.52.8.644
Abstract

Objective. We developed a simple, inexpensive test for assessing vertigo in persons with peripheral vestibular disorders.

Method. The test was administered to 16 asymptomatic adults and 16 patients with chronic vertigo caused by peripheral vestibular disorders. Participants sat in a chair and as rapidly as possible transferred 25 beanbags one at a time from a basket placed on the floor to a basket held .91 m up in the air. The task was timed, and the participants rated the level of vertigo elicited on a 10-point scale.

Results. Patients took significantly more time to perform the task and reported significantly greater levels of vertigo than did the asymptomatic adults. Test scores did not differ significantly across test sessions or raters.

Conclusion. Performance on this task reliably differentiated patients with vestibular disorders from asymptomatic adults. The test is inexpensive, takes less than 1 min to perform, and has minimal technical requirements, making it suitable for a variety of facilities and levels of staff expertise.