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Questionnaires and other bedside procedures used to Quantify Hearing and Balance Disorders

Timothy C. Hain, MD Page last modified: April 5, 2014 button Return to testing index

It is often useful to get a formal measurement of subjective symptoms accompaning a hearing and balance disorder. These questionnaires are generally published in publically accessible journals, and for this reason, they are not proprietary. While using the names of these instruments often sounds impressive, when you look at them carefully, you will see that these are often composed of very simple questions/answers. In our opinion, thats OK, but we think it is pretentious to use the names of these simple lists of questions as if they were magical incantations. We prefer functional names (such as the ABC) to instruments named after their authors.

Below are some of the questionnaires that we have found useful.

 

Questionnaire used to quantify balance dysfunction Link to questionnaire Source
Activities specific Balance Confidence Scale (ABC) ABC Powell and Meyers, 1995; Whitney et al, 1999
Berg Balance Scale. This is commonly used.

http://www.aahf.info/pdf/Berg_Balance_Scale.pdf

http://www.strokecenter.org/trials/scales/berg.html

Berg et al, 1989.
Chambliss Mobility Survey CMS http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~dchamb/questionnaires/index.html
Dizziness Handicap Inventory. The DHI is commonly used. DHI Jacobson and Newman, 1990, and several others below.
Hearing screen (AAA version) HS

http://www.audiology.org/aboutaudiology/consumered/guides/quicktest.htm?PF=1

This link was dead as of 3/2010 (TCH).

Hearing questionnaire (NIH version) HQ http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/hearing/10ways.asp
Falls efficacy scale. FES Tinetti, Richman et al. 1990
Modified falls efficacy scale (MFES) MFES Hill, Schwartz and others, 1996
Medical outcomes study short form 36 (SF-36). The link provides a public-domain source for this questionnaire. A local copy of it is here. SF-36

Enloe and Sheilds, 1997.

http://www.rand.org/health/surveys_tools/mos/mos_core_36item.html

Tinnitus History Questionnaire THQ  
Vestibular Activities of Daily Living. We don't know of anyone using this.   Cohen et al, 2000

There are also numerous tasks used to quantify balance.  These primarily involve having people stand in such a way that balance is challenged, and measuring their missteps.  Examples are:

References

Copyright November 2, 2014 , Timothy C. Hain, M.D. All rights reserved. Last saved on November 2, 2014