Vision rehabilitation for visual-vestibular dysfunction: the role of the neuro-optometrist

NeuroRehabilitation. 2013;32(3):483-92. doi: 10.3233/NRE-130871.


Introduction: This article discusses, in a clinically relevant format, the importance of including a neuro-optometrist as a member of the management team for patients with balance disorders.

Purpose: To review the importance of vision and visual processing for maintaining a sense of balance and equilibrium and the role of the neuro-optometrist in the overall rehabilitation of patients with balance disorders

Summary: Dizziness, balance problems and the sensation that the space world is moving (vertigo) are one of the most commonly reported problems in general medical practice. Persons with a central nervous system injury or other idiopathic causes of visual processing problems or who have functional vision problems that are not adequately managed, often experience extreme difficulty with balance and movement, as well as with their perception of space. Consequently, the patient often experiences difficulty functioning in an environment with excessive visual stimulation such as a grocery store or shopping mall. Symptoms of disequilibrium, vestibular and balance problems are commonly a result of VOR disturbance secondary to an inner ear problem and an unstable binocularity.

Conclusion: The combination of neuro-optomertic rehabilitative therapy and balance therapy will result in a is an effective treatment for reducing or resolving these symptoms.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Exercise Therapy*
  • Humans
  • Optometry
  • Postural Balance*
  • Reflex, Vestibulo-Ocular
  • Sensation Disorders / etiology
  • Sensation Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • Vestibular Diseases / complications
  • Vestibular Diseases / rehabilitation*
  • Vision Disorders / complications
  • Vision Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • Vision, Ocular