European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology

, Volume 269, Issue 2, pp 673–677 | Cite as

Influence of age and gender in the sensory analysis of balance control

  • Ana Faraldo-García
  • Sofía Santos-Pérez
  • Rosa Crujeiras-Casais
  • Torcuato Labella-Caballero
  • Andrés Soto-Varela


Postural control is achieved through the integration at the central nervous system level of information obtained by the visual, somatosensory and vestibular systems. Computerized dynamic posturography and the Sway Star system are both used to carry out sensory analysis. The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of sex and age on sensory analysis, measured with these two systems, and to compare their results. A prospective trial was conducted with 70 healthy individuals (average age: 44.9 years) uniformly distributed in seven age groups, who underwent postural study with both systems. We used SPSS 16.0 for statistical study: comparison of means test for influence of gender and age and Pearson’s correlation test (p < 0.05). Gender variable had no influence. The influence of age in vestibular input was found to be significant with both posturography systems, while visual input was only found to be significant with the Sway Star. The results with the two systems were not comparable. Sensory contribution does not remain stable throughout life. Visual information decreases with age, reaching a minimum at 40–49 years, and may correspond to the deterioration of eyesight with age. Propioceptive information showed no statistically significant changes, and several forms of treatment might correct the deterioration of this system. Vestibular information reaches a maximum in the 40–49 years age group in an attempt to compensate for visual deterioration, and decreases again in subsequent decades. This may be due to aging of the vestibular system and the difficulty in its correction.


Dynamic posturography Sway Star Sensory analysis Vestibular information 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ana Faraldo-García
    • 1
    • 3
  • Sofía Santos-Pérez
    • 1
  • Rosa Crujeiras-Casais
    • 2
  • Torcuato Labella-Caballero
    • 1
  • Andrés Soto-Varela
    • 1
  1. 1.Otorhinolaryngology DepartmentUniversity Hospital of Santiago de CompostelaSantiago de CompostelaSpain
  2. 2.Statistics and Operative Research DepartmentUniversity of Santiago de CompostelaSantiago de CompostelaSpain
  3. 3.TeoSpain

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