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Concussion: Vestibular Abnormalities and Ocular Motor Examination

presented by Anne Mucha, DPT, MS, NCS and Susan Whitney, DPT, PhD, NCS, ATC, FAPTA

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Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

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Accreditation Check:
This course will be retired and no longer available as of Sun Nov 1, 2020. Please start the course by Mon Oct 19, 2020 and complete the course by Sat Oct 31, 2020 to receive credit or look for Oculomotor Assessment in Concussion , available in the course catalogue.

Vestibular physical therapists are often consulted in concussion management due to the presence of visual and vestibular dysfunction following the injury. A multitude of visual and vestibular impairments are frequently observed following concussion and may complicate recovery. This course will review the components of an ocular motor examination following concussion, along with normal and abnormal findings. Demonstrations of techniques for evaluation and video examples of pathological findings will be shown. The implications of abnormal ocular motor findings for recovery will be reviewed.

Meet Your Instructors

Anne Mucha, DPT, MS, NCS

Anne Mucha is the coordinator of vestibular rehabilitation for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Sports Medicine Concussion Program and Centers for Rehab Services. She is a board-certified clinical specialist in neurologic physical therapy with advanced certification in vestibular rehabilitation. With more than 20 years of experience treating individuals with neurologic conditions, she is also…

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Susan Whitney, DPT, PhD, NCS, ATC, FAPTA

Susan L. Whitney, received her PhD in motor development/motor learning from the University of Pittsburgh, her professional physical therapy education from Temple University in Philadelphia, and her DPT from MGH Institute of the Health Professions. Currently, she is a professor in physical therapy in the UPMC School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, and she is…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Vestibular System Abnormalities Following Concussion: Beyond Balance

The participant will learn to recognize components of an ocular motor examination in patients following concussion. Dr. Mucha and Dr. Whitney demonstrate how to perform all components of an ocular motor examination in patients following concussion. The participant will learn to identify normal and abnormal findings for each ocular motor examination component.

2. Ocular Motor Examination in Concussion

In this chapter, Dr. Mucha and Dr. Whitney teach the participant how to perform components of the ocular motor exam, including testing of smooth pursuits, saccades, gaze holding, and vergence. The participant will learn how to perform ocular alignment testing and recognize phorias, trophias and skew deviations and identify normal and abnormal findings for the above tests and measures. This chapter provides insight into the relevance of findings in the ocular motor exam and intervention options.

3. Case Study: 13-Year-old Wrestler

Dr. Whitney and Dr. Mucha discuss the case of a 13-year-old wrestler with a labyrinthine concussion. The boy fell while wrestling and landed on the right parietal area of his skull. There was no LOC but was immediately vertiginous and could not sit or stand. When he was lying down he reported feeling as though he were tilting back and forth from his head to his legs. Dr. Whitney and Dr. Mucha discuss their take on this concussion case.

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