World’s First Balance Disorder Spectrum Diagnostic Tool
The Balance Disorder Spectrum brings together the whole range of balance disorders, enabling those affected to look at all known causes and symptoms on one page for the first time.
Most people who feel giddy, dizzy, light-headed, vertiginous, floating, woozy, off-balance, faint or fuzzy, have some kind of balance disorder. Although it is no substitute for a diagnosis by a fully qualified medical practitioner it will help to inform people suffering from these conditions so that they better understand their symptoms and can have a more informed conversation with their doctor.
The many different symptoms and causes of balance disorders mean that there have been few attempts to show what they have in common, until now.
The first step is a matter of public engagement. Working with trustees of the Ménière’s Society, the only registered charity in the UK dedicated solely to supporting people with inner ear disorders and other organisations the public launch of the Balance Spectrum tool will support the wide adoption of the Spectrum alongside a media campaign and nationwide events taking place during Balance Awareness Week in 16-22 September 2018.
The establishment of a spectrum of balance disorders provides a useful introduction and needed awareness to the field and can direct them to sources where they can find support.
The information presented in the Spectrum merely summarises published knowledge in an easy to use visual way. Developed alongside Prof. Andrew Hugill of Creative Computing and Prof. Peter Rea, a consultant otolaryngologist & ENT surgeon at University Hospital Leicester, the interactive spectrum presents for the first time a complete grouping of all known disorders in one place; contributes a comprehensive reference of where symptoms may stem from and enabling a more informed conversation with clinicians.
A visual wheel is used to help define the vast range and growing symptoms and causes. To distinguish this amount of facts and statistics collected together for reference or analysis, colour plays a significant role in data visualization. The need to highlight important information, as well as illustrate relationships between various types of data, the importance within optimisation can help the role in guiding the viewer’s eye when handling so heavy information. When colour vision deficiency (CVD) occurs 1 in 12 men (8%) and 1 in 200 women (0.5%) worldwide, consideration needs to be accounted for to make the Balance Disorder Spectrum more accessible and to overcome inclusivity.
The Balance Disorder Spectrum needed to be organised to reflect three main characteristics; the name of the disorder, the location of the disorder and by the main symptoms, grouped by intensity. Users may select a given disorder name (by clicking or tapping) to bring up a window giving further information about commonality, additional symptoms, causes and duration.
The information detailed about each condition will be continuously updated and become richer as the Balance Disorder Spectrum develops further over time, laying the ideal foundation for future healthcare AI for more accurate diagnosis
“Publicity and awareness of this new Balance Disorder Spectrum in the UK and worldwide will help clinicians and those affected by imbalance to make sense of these symptoms and the relationship between conditions.”
– Natasha Harrington-Benton, Ménière’s Society