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J R Soc Med. 1983 July; 76(7): 555–559.
PMCID: PMC1439105

Vestibular function tests in children.


Vestibular function tests were performed on a series of 57 children between the ages of 1 and 16 years. Inattention and immaturity of eye movement control created difficulties in the analysis of the electronystagmography traces in some instances. With the eyes closed, spontaneous and positional nystagmus occurred in 20% of asymptomatic children and this was thought to be physiological. Changes in external ear pressure (fistula test) enhanced this spontaneous nystagmus. Smooth pursuit ataxia and optokinetic abnormalities were common in the children with reading disabilities and those with congenital deafness, and were thought to be soft neurological signs of brainstem dysfunction. The torsion swing chair test was acceptable and gave easily readable responses. Caloric abnormalities were very common in children with reading disabilities and provided useful information in those with congenital and acquired disorders of hearing and balance. It was concluded that normal data were required for children of all ages in order to improve our understanding of electronystagmography in children.

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Selected References

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