Helping Patients Find Their Balance

June 01, 2014

Although balance and movement problems are more common in older adults, there’s still plenty you can do to keep them from affecting your daily life and wellbeing.

“There are many factors that can contribute to balance or movement disorders,” says Danette Taylor, D.O., a neurologist specializing in movement disorders at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital. “Our specialty clinics are designed to determine what may be causing your issues and what we can do to make them better.”

The staffs at the Balance Clinic and the Parkinson’s Disease & Movement Disorders Center at Henry Ford West Bloomfield take a multidisciplinary approach to diagnosing and treating patients. This allows them to create an individualized treatment plan designed around your specific conditions and needs.

Balance Clinic

“Balance problems are the end product of so many different processes,” says Christos Sidiropoulos, M.D., a neurologist at Henry Ford West Bloomfield.

They may be due to a slipped disc in the neck or back, an inner ear dysfunction that causes dizziness or vertigo, abnormal blood pressure or something else. At the Balance Clinic, you’ll likely see several different specialists within a single visit, saving you from having to make multiple trips. These specialists assess every possible cause for your balance problems in order to quickly arrive at an accurate diagnosis. Think of it as one-stop care.

“Many older adults take medications that can cause dizziness on their own or result in dizziness when taken with other medicines,” says audiologist Kenneth Bouchard, M.D. “We want to see if that is the cause and adjust the medications as necessary.”

Finding the right treatment for each patient is a collaborative effort. Every week, the experts at the Balance Clinic meet to discuss patients’ care, which may involve physical therapy or surgery.

Parkinson’s Disease & Movement Disorders Center

The spirit of teamwork at the Balance Clinic is also found at the Parkinson’s Disease & Movement Disorders Center.

“We collaborate and coordinate on each patient’s care,” says Dr. Sidiropoulos. Staff members focus on treating Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor — which causes uncontrolled shaking — and other disorders that affect normal movement of the body.

The Parkinson’s Disease & Movement Disorders Center is one of the few in the U.S. to offer deep brain stimulation while patients are under general anesthesia instead of being awake. This technique has been effective in helping control movements in many patients.