Recent advances in the diagnosis and treatment of balance disorders

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Here we summarize the recent progress made in the diagnosis and treatment of balance and gait disorders. Focusing on work published in the Journal of Neurology in 2010 and 2011, we have found evidence for the following clinically relevant statements: (1) the exclusion of stroke in acute vestibular syndromes is based on the bedside clinical findings; (2) the risk of developing secondary somatoform vertigo is predictable; it is especially high in patients with vestibular migraine; (3) postural imbalance and falls in Parkinson syndromes are related to dysfunction of the cholinergic midbrain thalamic axis; (4) aminopyridines improve a variety of cerebellar parameters including central nystagmus and gait variability.

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