MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Dizziness – that awful feeling of spinning or falling – can be associated with a number of different health issues. Feeling dizzy or off balance can also be dangerous, so finding the problem and fixing it is important.

The new West Virginia University Balance Center is treating people living with dizziness and balance problems.

“Many people come to me with dizziness, but the cause may not always be easy to detect,” Stephen Wetmore, M.D., chairman of WVU’s Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Department, said. “Dizziness can be inner-ear related. Meniere’s disease, viral or bacterial infections and head injuries can affect the inner ear, throwing off the delicate system that controls balance.”

Older people may have trouble with dizziness and balance, conditions related to age and muscle weakness. Sometimes stroke victims have lingering neurological issues. Even some medications can impair a person’s balance.

“First, we determine if the dizziness is ENT-related. If it’s not, we recommend another doctor who can help,” Dr. Wetmore said. “Most problems can be resolved through medication, surgery or therapy.”

The ENT Clinic and the Balance Center are located in the Physician Office Center, next to WVU’s Ruby Memorial Hospital. Call 304-598-4825 for an appointment.

For more information: Amy Johns, HSC News Service, 304-293-7087
mm: 04-25-11