The Importance of a Vertigo Treatment Plan
In my opinion, the most important thing when creating a vertigo treatment plan is to select a team of professionals that you trust and follow their treatment plan step by step.
Some aspects of vestibular rehab are simply following protocols.
But if your vertigo treatment plan hits a plateau, the next step may be to move on to another provider in that same profession with more experience.
You may also have to consult with other specialists or get more diagnostic testing at some point.
It is not necessarily beneficial to consult with many different providers within the same profession at the same time, because they may have different opinions thereby offering different instructions.
That is why it is important to create a vertigo treatment plan and stick with it.
If you are working with multiple specialists at the same time, then you must coordinate the care between your concurrent vertigo treatment plans. If there are any discrepancies or conflicts, you must address them with your healthcare team.
Getting tidbits of information from multiple providers can be helpful, but patients may get confused by receiving conflicting information.
That is why I do not generally recommend jumping from one provider to the next without completing your vertigo treatment plan.
Confirm the Diagnosis
Often times, the vertigo treatment plan is developed based on a theory of root cause.
That theory of root cause is either proven or disproven by how you respond to the vertigo treatment plan that is provided.
Hopefully, the treatments you receive will produce the desired results thereby confirming that you were correctly diagnosed.
However, that is not always the case. If your results are not satisfactory, then you may be misdiagnosed or only partially diagnosed.
Even though the process of completing a vertigo treatment plan with limited results can be frustrating, it is still valuable information in the long run.
If you quit early or switch to another provider before finishing your vertigo treatment plan, you could miss the opportunity to confirm your diagnosis – or disprove your diagnosis.
For Mystery Cases: Determine Root Cause in Hindsight
For some difficult cases that are not glaringly obvious at first – as to the root cause of dizziness, the diagnosis may actually occur in hindsight after a vertigo treatment plan is completed.
In those mystery cases, the patient may not have been diagnosed yet but may still start vestibular physical therapy treatments.
Sometimes, event the vestibular physical therapy initial exam does not clearly reveal the root cause.
So the root cause of vertigo may need to be determined “in hindsight” based on how the patient responds to different treatments that are offered as part of a comprehensive vestibular physical therapy plan of care.
If you do not follow up to complete your vertigo treatment plan as recommended, then your response to treatments may not be recorded in your medical chart.
Therefore, patients with a mystery case who quit a treatment plan prematurely could miss a potential opportunity to determine the root cause of their vertigo in hindsight, based on their response to the treatment.
Vertigo Treatment Plan for My Patients
I like to work with patients who want to commit to working through the rehab process with me. It can take a number of visits over time to develop the whole picture of inter-related root causes and how they are affecting each other inside the body.
An average patient with dizziness or vertigo sees me 4 to 6 times for their plan of care. Some difficult or challenging cases do require more visits than that for an episode of care, while easier cases require fewer visits.
Also, since dizziness and vertigo can recur for some patients, it is important to have an established relationship with local vertigo doctors. That way you can easily return to your healthcare team for further care if needed in the future.
I hope this information is helpful as you sort through navigating the health care system.
This blog is provided for informational purposes only. The content and any comments by Dr. Kim Bell, DPT are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. The details of any case mentioned in this post represent a typical patient that Dr. Bell might see and do not describe the circumstances of a specific individual.