Vestibular Pathology and its Effects in the Oncology Population (26:50)

a seminar included in:

COURSE: Core Competencies in Interdisciplinary Cancer Rehabilitation



Dizziness is the number one complaint resulting in physician referral for people over 70 years of age. The prevalence of dizziness being related to inner ear problems is up to 85%. Due to the high incidence of inner ear disorders, the likelihood that a cancer patient will experience dizziness or vertigo is significant.

This seminar reviews the anatomy and pathology of the vestibular system. It then presents the signs, symptoms, and causes of general vestibular impairment and how they relate to cancer and cancer treatment.

The presenter discusses differential diagnoses for common causes of vertigo and oncology-specific causes for dizziness. The audience will learn about the importance of central and peripheral nervous system examination of cancer patients and evidenced-based treatment techniques for vestibular system dysfunction that are utilized by the interdisciplinary cancer rehabilitation team.

The audience will learn how dizziness and balance disorders, combined with pre-existing or cancer treatment-related mobility issues, can lead to devastating effects and that timely recognition and treatment of vestibular dysfunction may be lifesaving.


  • Review the anatomical and physiological components of the vestibular system
  • Discuss the importance of central nervous system and peripheral nervous system examination in cancer patients
  • Review evidence-based treatments for vestibular system dysfunction
  • Review vestibular impairment signs, symptoms, and causes
  • Discuss correlations between cancers/cancer treatments and vestibular system impairments