Health News Articles

New Balance Program Helps Patients find Answers to and Relief from Unexplained Dizziness

May 9, 2013

Balance ImageFor many people, the sense of dizziness, lightheadedness or loss of balance is an all-too-often feeling that affects their daily functioning. Diagnosing the underlying cause—which can be as simple as an ear infection or as complex as cardiac disease—is sometimes the most challenging step in finding relief. The new Princeton Balance Program at University Medical Center of Princeton at Plainsboro provides prompt access to the multidisciplinary services needed to accurately diagnose and treat the symptoms and the cause.

“Dizziness and impaired balance is the most common emergency room complaint, so there are a lot of people who suffer from it, either occasionally or regularly. It can be especially dangerous for the elderly, because a fall can have devastating consequences,” says Rakesh Patel, MD , board certified otolaryngologist. “Finding the cause can be very frustrating because there are so many possibilities. However, our new program streamlines that process so that patients can get the right diagnosis—and the right help—a lot quicker.”

One call to the Princeton Balance Program’s hotline will connect patients with a specialist who conducts preliminary screening designed to fast-track patients to the appropriate clinical specialists. This initial evaluation will help the specialist—usually a nurse practitioner with particular expertise in balance issues—determine the appropriate starting point for testing and further evaluation.The program brings together specialists from audiology, otolaryngology (ENT), cardiology, neurology, emergency medicine, physical therapy, nursing and more, who work together to assess patients and develop a personalized treatment plan that provides them with the best possible opportunity for relief from their symptoms.

“Our multidisciplinary team works together to design a treatment plan that addresses the cause of dizziness and imbalance,” says Samir Undavia , MD, board certified otolaryngologist. “Treatment may include the latest medical, non-medical and rehabilitative treatment options like physical therapy, audiological, cardiac or stroke management, and otologic or neurological management.”

The symptoms associated with a balance disorder can be varied: vertigo or a spinning feeling, fainting, nausea, feeling as though falling, ringing in the ear, visual distortions and more.

“Our new program offers patients access to all the related specialties with just one phone call,” says Angelica O’Boyle, AuD, audiologist.

To schedule an evaluation with a Princeton Balance Program specialist, call 609.853.6400.