Please mark the box Yes, Sometimes, or No to each question as it relates to your dizziness.
Copyright: Jacobson GP, Newman CW The development of the Dizziness Handicap Inventory (DHI). Archives of Otolaryngology: Head & Neck Surgery 1990 Apr;116(4):424-7. doi: 10.1001/archotol.1990.01870040046011
Used with permission from Dr. Gary Jacobson
What is the Dizziness Handicap Inventory?
The Dizziness Handicap Inventory (DHI) is a self-assessment tool crafted for evaluating the debilitating impact of dizziness and balance disorders on an individual’s daily life. Originally developed by Jacobson and Newman in 1990, the DHI has emerged as a gold standard in the realm of vestibular and balance assessment, widely acknowledged by audiologists, otolaryngologists, and vestibular rehabilitation therapists. This inventory is instrumental in diagnosing and assessing the severity of dizziness-related disabilities, thus paving the way for tailored, effective treatment strategies.
Comprising 25 items, the Dizziness Handicap Inventory delves into three critical dimensions of dizziness-related handicap: functional, emotional, and physical aspects. Each item is thoughtfully designed to assess how dizziness affects day-to-day activities, emotional well-being, and physical functions. Patients respond to each item with ‘yes’ (4 points), ‘sometimes’ (2 points), or ‘no’ (0 points), culminating in a score that ranges from 0 to 100. A higher score on the DHI indicates a more severe handicap, thereby enabling healthcare professionals to gauge the intensity of the condition and monitor progress over time.
In clinical practice, the Dizziness Handicap Inventory is renowned for its ease of use, reliability, and validity. It serves as a vital tool in both diagnostic assessment and outcome evaluation for patients suffering from vertigo, Ménière’s disease, vestibular neuritis, and other balance disorders. By providing a quantitative measure of the impact of dizziness, the DHI aids clinicians in formulating personalized treatment plans, which may include vestibular rehabilitation, medication, or surgery. Its widespread use in research and clinical settings underscores its significance in advancing the understanding and management of balance disorders.
Moreover, the Dizziness Handicap Inventory has been translated and validated in multiple languages, expanding its accessibility and utility in diverse populations. This global adoption underscores its effectiveness in capturing the multifaceted nature of dizziness-related handicaps across different cultures and healthcare systems. The DHI remains a cornerstone in vestibular diagnostics, continually shaping the approach to balance disorder treatment and improving patient outcomes worldwide.