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Keywords:

  • cervical dystonia;
  • vestibular reflexes;
  • VEMP;
  • bone conduction;
  • galvanic

Abstract

Abstract: We examined the effects of acoustic and galvanic vestibular stimulation in a patient with cervical dystonia. Acoustic stimulation consisted of three conditions: “baseline” (no stimulation), “vestibular” (500 Hz bone-conducted tone bursts), and “control” (5,000 Hz tone bursts). Rectified electromyographic activity in the sternocleidomastoid was measured. Galvanic stimulation (1.5–2.5 mA current steps) was delivered to the mastoids, and head acceleration was measured. Vestibular acoustic stimulation reduced neck muscle activity between 16% and 44% (P < 0.001), and galvanic stimulation reduced head acceleration by 22.5% (P = 0.028). The patient reported subjective improvement in head control. Vestibular stimulation can reduce neck muscle activity in cervical dystonia and give symptomatic relief. © 2006 Movement Disorder Society