Balance and Falls:
If you are suffering from poor balance or frequent falls, our therapists
can help find the cause of the problem and work with you to build a plan
that will help. Falls can result from a number of factors including certain
medications, age and environmental obstacles. During your first visit, your
therapist will test your balance and neurological function, evaluate
sensation (how you sense and feel the placement of your feet), reflexes,
strength, vision, flexibility, coordination and vestibular or inner ear
function. We consider lifestyle factors such as poor lighting, furniture or
area rugs and environmental factors such as crowds, noise or curbs that can
increase the risk of a fall.
You do not need to have fallen to be at risk for injury. The fear of
falling can cause a person to avoid activities, leading to loss of strength
or flexibility that can actually increase the risk of falling.
Vestibular or inner ear issues:
This can cause dizziness, vertigo, nausea, unsteadiness or impaired
balance, and can often severely limit your day-to-day activities.
During your first visit, your therapist will evaluate your balance, gait
and function and do some tests that may provoke dizziness, nausea or a
spinning feeling. Once we have a diagnosis, the therapist will design a
treatment program to minimize these symptoms, improve balance and stability
or retrain the central nervous system to adapt to the inner ear
Sometimes, we can treat an inner ear problem and educate you about a home
program in one or two visits.
Our physical and occupational therapists work closely with physicians at
the Multiple Sclerosis and Demyelinating Disorders Clinic to offer you the
best therapies to manage your condition. Your therapist can help reduce
fatigue, build endurance and improve movement as well as general wellbeing
and mood. The therapies will help you—whether you have been recently
diagnosed, or have had multiple sclerosis relapses or exacerbations.
Your therapist will develop an individualized treatment program to address
your specific condition and requirements.
If you have Parkinson's disease or other movement disorders, our therapists
work side-by-side with your care team of physician, PCP, nurse practitioner
and others to help you live life to the fullest.
The Movement Disorders Center is a multidisciplinary outpatient program to
diagnose and treat patients with parkinsonian syndromes, tremors, gait
disorders, dystonia, spasticity, dyskinesias, tic disorders, chorea and
drug-induced movement disorders. Our therapists will evaluate your specific
symptoms during your first visit help you manage symptoms.
Regardless of your neurological problem, your therapist will build a
treatment program designed around your needs. Your treatment will likely
Exercises for strength, coordination, flexibility and balance.
Instructions in a home exercise program.
Advice about equipment.
Communication with your doctor.
Balance treatment will likely include advice about shoes and specific
changes at home to improve safety. For inner ear disorders, treatment may
also include specific movements and exercises to correct or retrain the ear
and brain to improve your sense of balance. For MS therapy, we may advice
you on how to pace your activity to avoid fatigue. And our therapists may
include exercises to improve your breathing muscles if you suffer from