The benefits of combining vestibular diagnostics with vestibular rehabilitation
In June 2019, Interacoustics, functioning as the distributor, launched the Bertec® portfolio of rehabilitation solutions. Michelle Renee Petrak, Director of Clinical Audiology, Interacoustics, enlightens us on this collaboration.
- This is an exciting time for Interacoustics. In 2018, we launched the Bertec® products internally for the first time, having invited some of our European salespeople, as they were the first ones to be distributing Bertec®. Interacoustics has always been well known as a diagnostic company. However, bringing in this new portfolio expands our horizon to the realm of rehabilitation, which is fantastic.
Interacoustics has a lot of equipment to measure and record eye movements and to diagnose vestibular dizziness disorders, but we’ve never had a product line that allows us to rehabilitate a patient. Now, we have an exercising platform and immersive virtual reality that we can use to help people deal better with motion intolerance and visual vestibular interference. And we have a dynamic visual acuity headband that we can put on to increase the patient’s ability to read while his or her head is in motion.
As such, the Bertec® product line allows us to continue alongside the patient on his or her balance quest.
What is the goal of this line?
- We had a gap in our product line. We had all the diagnostic tools but a limited amount of rehabilitation tools. Bringing in Bertec® allows us to fill this gap. Interacoustics has been in the game of diagnosing hearing impairments for many years, after which patients are fitted with a hearing aid from Oticon to compensate for their hearing loss. Now we are getting our ‘Oticon’ on the vestibular or balance side, as the inclusion of Bertec® will provide rehabilitation for treating the diagnosis. Therefore, Bertec® puts us in a much better position to cover the patient’s journey towards improved vestibular function.
What’s in it for the patients?
- A lot. People that have a balance disorder often sway or they can’t stand very still, which causes them to fall. The tools from Bertec® provide exercises that will diminish these disorders and get patients back to walking and driving a car and all imaginable activities.
In addition, given that the tools are cutting-edge and thus more effective, patients won’t have to go through as extensive treatment as they have done before. For example, the virtual reality stimulus we use today is more advanced than previous stimuli, allowing for faster rehabilitation, of great benefit to the patient.
How has the market responded to the new product line?
- The response has been positive. The Bertec® product line enables clinics to function as a single point of contact, covering the whole patient trajectory from diagnosis to rehabilitation. The Bertec® portfolio consists of very advanced technologies, but our end users and customers seem very motivated and eager to learn.
Read more about the Bertec® rehabilitation portfolio.
About the authors
|Shane Seiger-Eatwell is a Master of Linguistics and Communication (cand.ling.merc.), having graduated from Aarhus University in 2018. He joined Interacoustics in January 2019 as a Marketing Communications Specialist.|
|Michelle Petrak, Ph.D. Biomolecular Electronics and Electrophysiology, is the Director of Clinical Audiology for Interacoustics DK. Her primary role is in new product developments. She is located in Chicago where she is a licensed and practicing clinical audiologist at Northwest Speech and Hearing.|