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Vestibular Symptoms, Balance, and Their Disorders: How Will We Classify Them? 

Vestibular Symptoms, Balance, and Their Disorders: How Will We Classify Them?
Vestibular Symptoms, Balance, and Their Disorders: How Will We Classify Them?

Jeffrey P. Staab

, Alexandre R. Bisdorff

, and David E. Newman-Toker

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date: 28 October 2021

Classification and definitions for symptoms, syndromes, diseases, mechanisms, and outcomes are essential to high-quality clinical care and research, in all branches of medicine. Clear definitions for clinical phenomena (i.e., symptoms, signs, and syndromes) are essential to promoting accurate and efficient diagnosis. Clear definitions for disease-related concepts (e.g., specific diseases and underlying pathomechanisms) are essential for developing and utilizing effective therapies. Definitions for vestibular and balance disorders have lagged behind those in other disciplines. This Chapter introduces the International Classification of Vestibular Disorders (ICVD) initiative. We begin by reviewing the history of classification in general before focusing specifically on vestibular disorders, including the genesis of the ICVD initiative and the critical role of the Bárány Society and its members. We state the goals and scope of the proposed ICVD and describe the method of its development. We outline its overall structure before detailing specific components, including recently-published consensus definitions for cardinal vestibular symptoms such as “vertigo” and ‘dizziness’ and the current status of major working groups focused on consensus definitions for Menière disease, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, vestibular migraine, and behavioural disorders.

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