Videonystagmography (VNG) – Balance Testing

Hearing Evaluation Services (HES) has a large team of audiologists, which allows us to have specialists in areas such as counseling and balance. Therefore, HES balance testing and subsequent treatment is administered or monitored by a balance specialist who will be committed to working with you throughout the process.

Videonystagmography (VNG) testing is recommended if a patient has complaints of dizziness, including vertigo (spinning sensation), imbalance, unsteadiness, and/or lightheadedness.  We use VNG to determine if the vestibular portion of the inner ear, which is responsible for carrying balance signals to the brain, may be the cause of dizziness symptoms. VNG is one of the only tests capable of determining if a vestibular problem is localized to one or both sides of the balance system.

Good balance and vision rely on a close relationship between the vestibular organ and the eyes. The VNG evaluates your balance function by using a pair of goggles, which are designed to record your eye movements when following visual objects. People produce involuntary eye movements called, “nystagmus,” when they become dizzy. If there is a problem within the balance system, certain head or body positions can trigger these involuntary eye movements.

There are three parts of the VNG test:

  • Oculomotor: Sitting upright, you will follow a moving light with your eyes. This test helps to determine how well your eyes, brain and vestibular system are working together to track various objects. The link between these three organs facilitates activities like walking and checking your watch or cellphone at the same time.
  • Positional: Eye movements are monitored while you are moved to a variety of different head and body positions on the examination table. This test helps determine which structures of the balance system may be involved in causing your dizziness.
  • Caloric: Laying back at an angle, your doctor will stimulate the vestibular system by inserting a gentle flow of cool and warm water or air into the ear canal for approximately 30 seconds. This test allows us to measure the strength of each component of the balance system in each ear.

Oftentimes, dizziness can be associated with post-concussive symptoms, migraines, medications, phobias and aging. HES uses VNG testing in conjunction with other balance tests to find the cause of dizziness. With a specific diagnosis, HES is able to make recommendations to correct or rehabilitate a patient’s dizziness.

If you or someone you love is suffering from any type of dizziness or imbalance, Contact any of our HES locations to schedule an appointment with a balance specialist. With the proper rehabilitation and treatment, you can reduce symptoms of dizziness, and live a happy and normal life.

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