Vestibular rehabilitation improves daily life function

Am J Occup Ther. 1994 Oct;48(10):919-25. doi: 10.5014/ajot.48.10.919.


This article reviews recent research that addresses the functional outcomes of intervention for vestibular disorders. Vestibular impairments cause disequilibrium, blurred vision, disorientation, and vertigo. These sensory disturbances and motor impairments in turn cause dysfunction in many activities of daily living and in social interactions that traditional medical treatments do not address. The motor sequelae of some vestibular disorders can be treated successfully with programs of graded exercises and activities, the functional implications of which are described herein. The functional impairments caused by other vestibular disorders, which cannot be treated with graded activities, are also described. These disorders include bilateral vestibular loss caused by connective tissue disorders or by the use of ototoxic medications, tumors of the labyrinth or vestibular nerve, and Meniere's disease. Occupational therapy intervention for these conditions may involve providing adaptive equipment, teaching alternative strategies for performing activities of daily living, and psychological intervention for depression and anxiety.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living*
  • Humans
  • Meniere Disease / physiopathology
  • Meniere Disease / rehabilitation
  • Occupational Therapy* / methods
  • Vestibular Diseases / physiopathology
  • Vestibular Diseases / rehabilitation*
  • Vestibule, Labyrinth / anatomy & histology
  • Vestibule, Labyrinth / physiology