CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. – Keystone Health President and CEO Joanne Cochran has struggled with vertigo sporadically since she was a young adult.
But when a bout with vertigo left her dizzy and with nausea for three weeks solid earlier this year, Cochran knew she needed more than just additional time to make it go away.
“The first two days, I couldn’t even get out of bed – it was pretty awful,” she said, noting she couldn’t move her eyes without feeling sick and lost eight pounds during the three-week period as a result of her nausea.
Cochran admits knowledge of WellSpan Center for Dizziness and Balance Disorders could have helped her earlier.
“I wish I had known about this – I had no reason not to as president of Keystone Health.”
After visiting her primary-care provider, Cochran was referred to the center and saw Jay Snyder, a physical therapist with the practice.
“My appointment was at 3:30 and I walked out at 4:30 totally cured. That doesn’t happen to everyone, but, luckily for me, it did,” she said. “Now, I’m doing exercises at home to prevent it – it takes five minutes.”
Snyder said Cochran had benign positional vertigo (BPV), which accounts for about 40 percent of vertigo cases. He explained that crystals of the inner ear can get displaced. When this happens, a person can experience symptoms like Cochran’s until the crystals return to their proper position – either on their own or with coaxing from therapy.
During Cochran’s appointment, Snyder used a mat table to lead her through a series of rolls that manipulated the crystals back to their rightful spot.
“It’s like if you had a hula hoop and cut it open, put a cork in one end, put a marble in the other, and were trying to get it out,” he explained. “It worked out really well this time,” he said, noting many people require more than one appointment to correct the issue.
Cochran calls Snyder a “miracle worker” and wishes she’d been aware of the help he could give her sooner.
“I just can’t say enough wonderful things about this program,” she said. “We are very fortunate to have this fabulous service in our community.”
About Summit Health
Summit Health is part of WellSpan Health, a non-profit network of hospitals and physician practices dedicated to building a healthier community.
As Franklin County's leading healthcare provider, Summit Health offers family care, specialists, lab and imaging services, a fitness center, urgent care centers, and two award-winning hospitals.