Yolanda C Balance Center Helps Patients Get Back on Track

"I had trouble with my balance when I first came here, but by completing my program I feel like my life is back to normal."

Cloney is an active senior who enjoys playing cards, shopping, getting her hair done and going out to dinner with friends.

Cloney woke up one morning with severe light-headedness and trouble keeping her balance. She was unable to walk three feet without feeling like she was going to fall. Her condition forced her to curtail simple, daily activities and rely on the kindness of others to perform such duties as food shopping.

Cloney was referred to the Balance Center at RWJ Hamilton where she was given a series of tests. One of the most significant ways her condition was addressed came through Video Nystagnography (VNG), a test for eye movements as related to head and body position, which determines the source of a balance disturbance. The VNG results, combined with a physical therapy evaluation, helped Physical Therapist, Jason Homowitz, PT set up specifically tailored plan of care.

Plan of Care: A course of therapy running twice per week for 10 to 12 weeks featuring:

  • Vestibular Therapy – Repeated head and body movements to simulate actions taken during sitting, standing and walking, that are intended to help patients regain stability.
  • Strengthening System – Exercises concentrating on the lower extremities to help Yolanda’s legs remain strong to provide stability in the event of future balance issues.
  • Extended Home Exercises – A routine of head movements, eye movements and leg exercises following 10 to 12 weeks of inpatient treatment.

Outcome: Yolanda has returned to a life of independent activities. She has made a full recovery.

“I thought the dizzy feeling would never leave me and I was really scared,” says Cloney. “I had the best therapist. He was very encouraging and guided me through everything. Everyone at the Balance Center showed a keen interest in my problem and made a program to meet my specific needs. I had trouble with my balance when I first came here, but by completing my program I feel like my life has back to normal.”