Dizziness, Vertigo & Balance Evaluation

The UNC HCC offers comprehensive evaluation of the inner ear’s balance system. We evaluate symptoms of dizziness, vertigo, and imbalance to see if the inner ear is the source of the problem. We work with your primary or specialty physician to reach an accurate diagnosis of the problem, and create a treatment plan.

Problems of dizziness, vertigo, and poor balance are very serious. Research shows that these problems are extremely common and carry heavy consequences in affecting quality of life, restricting activities or work, and putting people at risk for dangerous falls. Research shows that 1 in 3 people over 65 years old fall each year. Dizziness is a primary reason for seeing a doctor for 5.6 million visits to physicians in the US each year.

Dizziness, vertigo and balance problems can be due to many different things. Often, the inner ear is to blame for problems of vertigo; which is defined as a “feeling of spinning, or a feeling of moving despite being still”. Since the inner ear is highly responsible for helping us keep our balance and our orientation of where we are in space, especially when we are moving around. Problems of the inner ear can cause difficulty with walking, driving, working, or even doing simple errands such as going to grocery store.

It is important to note that symptoms of dizziness, vertigo, or poor balance can sometimes be very complex. It is critical for your healthcare providers to work together to arrive at a correct diagnosis and treatment for your specific condition. At the UNC HCC, we always work in tandem with your primary care or specialty physician to evaluate your problem. Often, the evaluation of dizziness can be a team effort involving your primary care doctor, audiologists, ENT doctors, neurologists, and other healthcare providers. Treatments for inner ear problems are usually carried out by audiologists, physical therapists, or medical doctors/surgeons if medication or surgery is involved.

To receive an evaluation from the UNC HCC, make sure to contact your primary or specialty care doctor to get their advice on your candidacy for evaluation.

The UNC HCC offers the following evaluations and treatments (information for patient and referring physicians):

  • In-depth dizziness case history
  • Bedside evaluation
    • Eye movement testing
    • Balance testing (mCTSIB)
    • Other tests as indicated
  • Videonystagmography (VNG)
  • Electronystagmography (ENG)
  • Video Head Impulse Test (vHIT)
  • Comprehensive audiological testing for hearing
    • Audiometry
    • Tympanometry
    • Acoustic Reflex Testing
    • Fistula Testing
  • Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo Testing (BPPV)
  • Treatment for BPPV
    • Canalith Repositioning Maneuver (Epley Maneuverer)
    • Semont Liberatory Maneuver
    • Roll Maneuver for treatment of Horizontal Canal BPPV
    • Gufoni Maneuever for treatment of Horizontal Canal BPPV
      • Geotropic and Ageotropic variants
    • Head-hanging Treatments for Anterior Canal BPPV
    • Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT) referrals with tailored recommendations based on diagnostic results
    • VRT at-home program for special patient populations