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Vertigo / Vestibular (Audiology)


Minimum Referral Criteria

  • Category 1
    (appointment within 30 calendar days)
    • No category 1 criteria

    NB: recent, sudden onset dizziness / vertigo with associated neurological symptoms should be referred to Emergency ASAP.

  • Category 2
    (appointment within 90 calendar days)
    • Recent sudden onset with no neurological symptoms
    • Symptoms are preventing ability to work / maintain employment
  • Category 3
    (appointment within 365 calendar days)
    • Suspected benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) not responding to repeated canalith repositioning manoeuvres (> 3 treatments)
    • Co-morbid vestibular or otological conditions
    • Symptoms not resolved after seeing vestibular physiotherapist
    • Chronic dizziness

1. Reason for request Indicate on the referral

  • To establish a diagnosis
  • For treatment or intervention
  • For advice and management
  • For specialist to take over management
  • Reassurance for GP/second opinion
  • For a specified test/investigation the GP can't order, or the patient can't afford or access
  • Reassurance for the patient/family
  • For other reason (e.g. rapidly accelerating disease progression)
  • Clinical judgement indicates a referral for specialist review is necessary

2. Essential referral information Referral will be returned without this

  • Description of:
    • Dizziness/balance symptoms (vertigo, disequilibrium, light-headed etc)
    • onset, duration, frequency and positional
    • functional impact of dizziness
    • any associated otological/neurological symptoms (e.g. changes to hearing/tinnitus, onset of headache)
    • any previous diagnosis of dizziness (attach correspondence)
    • any treatments (medication/other) previously tried, duration of trial and effect
    • any previous investigations/imaging results
    • past history of middle ear disease/surgery

3. Additional referral information Useful for processing the referral

  • History of any of the following:
    • cardiovascular problems [e.g. stroke, TIA, vertebro-basilar artery insufficiency]
    • neck problems [cervical degeneration, Chiari malformation etc.]
    • neurological conditions [epilepsy/seizures, MS, Parkinson's etc.]
    • auto immune conditions/diabetes
    • eye problems [blindness, history of retinal detachments, eye muscle weakness/lazy eye etc.]
    • migraine history
    • previous head injury
  • Current medication list
  • Investigations and/or other conditions eliminated as a causative factor for vestibular problems.
  • Results of any diagnostic investigations to date to determine cause of vestibular symptoms
  • Previous treatment with vestibulo-toxic / ototoxic medications (Gentamycin, Cisplatin etc.)
  • History of drug and alcohol abuse
  • Psychological history [anxiety and/or claustrophobia etc.]

4. Request

Last updated: 13 June 2023