A rotary chair test, also called a rotational chair test, is a test used to evaluate the vestibular system in patients with dizziness and/or vertigo. It may be used in additional to a vestibulonystagmography (VNG) test to determine the cause of the dizziness. It is the gold standard in diagnosing bilateral vestibular dysfunction.
It measures the vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR), which is the reflex connection between the vestibular system and the eyes that allows you to see things clearly during movement, such as reading a street sign when walking down the street. The VOR is measured during rotary chair testing with the use of infrared video goggles placed over the eyes while the patient is asked to watch moving lights in front of them and when the chair is being turned at varying speeds. The eye movements, also called nystagmus, are then analyzed by the Audiologist to determine whether the dizziness is a result of a vestibular system disorder or central nervous system problem.