The career journey so far… so many places, people, and learnings. We’ve been going through images from travels across the world, to celebrations of wonderful people met… and this is another flashback to Professor Nutti’s Retirement celebration in Sienna 2013…
This photo is of the Master Class for Vestibular Testing in Amsterdam (2016).
Their findings reveal a unique biological mechanism for maintaining fluid pressure and composition and may inform the study and treatment of disorders involving defects in inner ear pressure such as Meniere’s disease, a condition marked by vertigo, hearing loss and ringing in the ears. The results could also help researchers study pressure control in other organs such as the eyes and kidneys, which also have liquid-filled cavities.
Prof. Rask-Andersen is a specialist in ENT & Audiology, an anatomist, and electron microscopist, and he is a senior Professor in experimental Otology at the Uppsala University and the Academic Hospital in Uppsala, Sweden. He currently runs the Research Department at the Academic Hospital.
In this article, Prof. Rask-Andersen explains the intricate functions of the cochlea and why structure preservation should be a priority for every cochlear implant surgery—even if there is no residual hearing. He shows why damage to the delicate cochlear structures can have such an adverse effect on the health of the underlying neural structures, and the impact this can have on outcomes with a cochlear implant.
You are invited to participate in a research study being conducted by Dr. Cherylea Browne, Lecturer in Human Anatomy, School of Science & Health and Ms. Viviana Mucci, Doctoral Student, Antwerp University Research Centre for Equilibrium and Aerospace (AUREA) & Laboratory of BioMedical Physics (BIMEF), University of Antwerp.
This research aims to contribute to the understanding of the underlying mechanisms of Mal de Debarquement Syndrome (MdDS). Specifically, this study seeks to collate data regarding the effects of pregnancy on MdDS symptoms.
The study aims to collect survey data from MdDS patients who are currently pregnant or who were pregnant whilst having MdDS, so please tag or share with anyone who might be interested in taking part in their research.
Click here to complete the survey – uwsssap.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cu811naTKs6CHd3
For any inquiries or more information, please contact Josephine (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Cherylea Browne (email@example.com) via email.
MdDS Research Group Facebook Page: facebook.com/MdDSResearchGroup/
Article on Whirled Foundation: whirledfoundation.org/mal-de-ebarquement-syndrome-mdds-research/
Quote: “Dr Cherylea Browne from the MdDS Research Group at Western Sydney University became interested in MdDS after her own diagnosis of the condition and is now conducting research into the clinical features of MdDS. Her interests include the underlying hormonal aspects of MdDS and autonomic nervous system maladaptation in MdDS patients. The MdDS Research Group, though early in its formation, has generated interest from around the world, with collaborators contributing to research studies from Mt Sinai Hospital in New York, Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney and Antwerp University Hospital in Belgium.”
Professor Dr Margie Sharpe says, “loss of confidence after a fall all too often translates into avoidance of physical movement/activity. Meaning, we sit for long periods of time in an attempt to avoid falling over. Unfortunately, the lack of physical activity actually causes more falls.”
You can think of it along these lines; sitting is the killer and movement is the healer. To activate our balance mechanisms we need to move (eg walking on uneven surfaces, shopping, gardening).
We are designed to live in a gravitational world (not in outer space); so gravity is our friend and not our foe.
But what if we showed you how to fall correctly?
1) Prevention of Falls in the Elderly
Authored by Dr Colin Tidy, 03 Jul 2016
Text by CHRISTOPHER F. SCHUETZEJAN. 2, 2018
Tania Stadsbader is a VEDA Ambassador and author of the book, “Dizzy Me” – a memoir about her journey to get a vestibular diagnosis. She’s heard it all, from hyperventilation to a brain tumour, and from laziness to Ménière’s syndrome. It took doctors almost 14 years to figure out why Tania Stadsbader felt so dizzy.
Professor Dr Margie Sharpe has personally met and chatted to Tania about her story.
She is encouraged by the determination and commitment shown by Tania in reaching out to others, to help reduce the barriers to a patient’s correct diagnosis.
In fact, Professor Dr Margie Sharpe encourages all Doctors and Physiotherapists to reach a better understanding of these conditions for their own practice. She further suggests for example, organisations such as the Australian Medical Association make educational materials, sessions and learnings available to ensure better awareness within the medico industry.
It is an unfortunate truth for some people to experience long journey’s before a correct diagnosis becomes evident. Before the age of 60, 30-40% of us are challenged by some form of vestibular disorder. Currently, under 25% of vestibular patients receive successful medical care.
By writing the book Dizzy Me, Tania, and her co-author Professor Floris Wuyts have teamed up to endeavour to change this situation. Their book gathers knowledge about 12 vestibular conditions to make both diagnosis and treatment easier.
Here is Tania’s story in her own words – and Margie thanks her immensely for this article.
“I am a Belgian ex-patient who wrestled with BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Position Vertigo) for 15 years before undergoing a canal plugging surgery that cured my balance disorder. The posterior semicircular canal is partitioned or plugged with small bone chips and human fibrinogen glue to stop the movement of endolymph and foreign particles within the canal so that the canal no longer sends false signals to the brain due to BPPV.
Today I am 47 and healthy with a career, but I do realize I was very lucky to find someone who finally helped me. My BPPV started when I was 23 and only ended at the age of 38. But in 2008 I finally recovered 100% thanks to the surgery. It was Professor Floris Wuyts, a medical physicist specialized in dizziness who guided me in my search for the diagnosis and cure.
Wuyts even guided me twice to the right diagnosis and treatment. In 2015 I underwent a nose and sinus surgery. As a result of the anesthesia and belladonna intake – which I did on own initiative because of the headaches – I experienced VP (Vestibular Paroxysmia) for 10 days. The underlying cause of Vestibular Paroxysmia is a neurovascular conflict, in which a blood vessel touches or compresses the vestibulocochlear nerve (N VIII). It was a horrible flash-back to my 15 years of illness. But this time I recovered very quickly thanks to immediate diagnosis.
VP symptoms are repeated brief attacks of vertigo or dizziness, typically lasting a few seconds to several minutes and occurring several times a day. The attacks occur spontaneously or are triggered by certain head movements. The latter makes the entity difficult to distinguish from BPPV. Possible additional symptoms are short-lasting tinnitus and hearing loss. Between the attacks, mild to moderate hearing loss and balance may occur, which makes it difficult to distinguish from Ménière’s Disease (MD). Spontaneously occurring short spells of dizziness also occur with Vestibular Migraine (VM), making it even more challenging to diagnose VP correctly.
My life story became my mission. As a change-maker in medicine and VEDA ambassador I now work with doctors and patients to raise awareness about all vestibular conditions. I wrote a book under the name Dizzy Me in which I look back on a long search for a proper diagnosis, the impact of 14 years of misdiagnosis and the 15 years of BPPV illness. I asked Floris Wuyts to become my co-author.
I tell my story directly and clearly, and also give a voice to many of my fellow sufferers, all with different disorders. Wuyts provides an extensive framework on the balance system, from anatomy, testing to 12 different disorders including clinical signs and therapy. The groundbreaking combination of patients’ and professionals’ voices makes this volume unique of its type.”
“Dizzy Me. Shedding light on balance” Oct. 2017, Kügler Publications, ISBN 987-90-6299-265-2.
The Société Française d’ORL (French Society of ORL and Surgery of the Face and Neck) hosted the IFOS ENT World Congress in Paris, June 2017.
IFOS is the International Federation of Oto – Rhino – Laryngological Societies and was founded in 1965 to provide continuity between World Congresses.
It has evolved to deal on a global basis with the problems of people with ORL disease by means of an active secretariat and committee lobbying the World Health Organisation, a leader in the global programme for hearing loss and prevention, providing interchange between centers worldwide.
It is also involved in medical education and the development of medical undergraduate curricula.
The Société Française d’ORL (French Society of ORL and Surgery of the Face and Neck) is a well-known society being more than a hundred years old.
The society welcomes more than 2,600 members, including more than 700 foreign correspondent members.
Its purpose is the scientific development of the specialty and contributes in this capacity to the organisation of the largest French and Francophone ENT event by the National Congress.
The scientific level and the quality of the exhibition of this Congress make it the unavoidable scientific manifestation of our specialty and allow to make known scientific and technological development as a continuous progress. It also represents and defends the interests of the specialty through the preparation of recommendations, annual thematic reports, and participation in continuing education activities.
Over 8000 people attended this particular International Congress held in Paris, June 2017.
Prof. Dr Margie Sharpe was the only Australian Consultant Vestibular Physiotherapist to attend the International conference and noted a growing number of physiotherapists specialising in evaluation and treatment of patients with Vestibular disorders attending this meeting.
The Conference thanked Margie by saying,
“The Organizing and Scientific Committees were deeply honored to welcome Prof. Dr Margie Sharpe to the Annual Conference of the Societe Francaise ENT to share the scientific content throughout those few days.“
Prof. Dr Margie Sharpe has captured her personal highlights for you below,
- The Paediatric Symposium: in particular the role of the vestibular system in the developing child and its deleterious effects in babies and children when it is impaired, including balance control in children.
- Latest developments in the management of Vestibular migraine and Meniere’s disease
- Advanced diagnosis and management of BPPV
- The effects of microgravity on the human vestibular system and the relevance of this to vestibular adaptation/compensation in patients with vestibular dysfunction.
- New developments in equilibrium testing.
- Current strategies for vestibular rehabilitation of chronic vestibular dysfunction.
- Issues using the video Head Impulse Test (HIMPS) to test semicircular canal function and the new Suppression Head Impulse Test (SHIMPS).
- How astronauts can guide (us) to look into the brain of dizzy (vestibular) patients.
- Translating “bench to bedside”: An update on vestibular physiology and pathophysiology.
- Vestibular contribution to space perception.
The next IFOS ENT World Congress will be held in Vancouver Canada in 2021.
Connectomics and Cortical Transistors
Margie shares; German scientists have recently discovered a precise nerve cell connectivity pattern (nerve cell circuits) in part of the cerebral cortex, which is responsible for orienting us in space. These grid cells provide a very particular representation of the space around the individual human and are known to be active when we are located at highly ordered grid-like locations in a room or a large space.
Read more within the following articles and research;
Highly Precise Wiring in the Cerebral Cortex
Summary: Researchers from Max Planck Institute have identified a neural connectivity pattern in the medial entorhinal cortex that appears to assist with navigation.
Full article available here: http://neurosciencenews.com/cerebral-cortex-wiring-7543/
Source: Max Planck Institute.
Released: 21 September 2017
Original Research: Abstract for “Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex” by Helene Schmidt, Anjali Gour, Jakob Straehle, Kevin M. Boergens, Michael Brecht & Moritz Helmstaedter in Nature. Published online September 20 2017 doi:10.1038/nature24005
You are not alone in your struggle with dizziness, vertigo, imbalance, vision problems, brain fog, and the other debilitating symptoms of a vestibular disorder.
Vertigo and dizziness are the second most common complaint after headache.
What can be difficult for both a patient and his or her doctor is that the word “dizziness” is a subjective term. This means that the word can be used by people to describe different sensations they are experiencing, but it is hard for anyone but the person experiencing the symptoms to understand or measure the nature or severity of the sensations.
During this year’s Balance Awareness Week, we have an exciting campaign – to help everyone discuss and raise awareness of the issues and challenges people experience with balance (and vestibular disorders)… and then what they have done to overcome them.
Do your best flamingo…
We ask that you share your story about how you rebalanced your life after being diagnosed with a vestibular disorder.
You can share them with us direct – or simply among your friends.
EMAIL YOUR STORY TO CHARLIE
Our aim is to capture as many experiences into a shareable digital booklet for all. We’d love to hear from you.
Note; Professor Dr Margie H Sharpe is the Director and Principal of the Centre and the pioneer of Vestibular and Balance Rehabilitation in Australia. She conducts individual consultations by appointment only and does not consult or answer questions online.