Vertigo, dizziness, and balance problems can be life altering. For many people it can affect their ability to do even the simplest daily tasks. If you are experiencing vertigo or balance issues, your primary care provider may want to refer you for an inner ear balance (vestibular system) evaluation with an Audiologist. Fairbanks Hearing & Balance Center has the most comprehensive vestibular testing equipment in the State of Alaska and works closely with local professionals to ensure that the appropriate treatment is provided. There are a number of tests that may be performed depending on your symptoms, including:
- Hearing Diagnostics. The hearing and balance organs of the inner ear are very close in proximity and can sometimes involve one another in a health issue. Therefore, as part of your balance work-up, a diagnostic hearing evaluation is performed to aid in diagnosis of various balance disorders related to hearing loss.
- Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR). This neurologic test provides information about the electrical activity in the auditory pathway between the inner ear and the brain, and measures a person’s hearing sensitivity.
- Videonystagmography. This test measures eye movements to evaluate the inner ear and brain motor functions. It can determine whether a vestibular disorder is the cause of a balance problem, and where one or both ears are affected.
- Video Head Impulse Testing. This test measures eye movements in relation to quick head movements to evaluate an important reflex between the inner ear and eye muscles.
- Vestibular-Evoked Myogenic Potentials (VEMP). Using recording sensors on the head and neck, this balance test records stimulation of muscles by sounds presented to the ear.
These tests are quick, painless, and can help us diagnose and evaluate a variety of hearing and balance disorders. Because of the nature of these tests, there are some preparations you will need to make before your evaluation. The Audiologist will provide you with pre-test instructions that you can also reference in our Patient Form tab. These are very important instructions and must be followed. Failure to do so may result in rescheduling. Please contact us with any questions prior to your appointment.