CIDP and balance

November 2, 2006 at 4:19 pm

I’m so glad you asked this question because I have been having the same problems. I’ve was diagnosed with CIDP for about three years ago. I asked my neurologist about it and he could only confirm that it was common in CIDP patients.

I think the lack of balance is not due to any equilibrium problems but in the feet’s inability to compensate for changes in position rapidly enough to maintain good balance. I think this because I am still able to bicycle without falling and there are few activities that depend on balance more.

Unfortunately this means walking remains difficult. Here is what I always remember:

Stay close to objects that can support your weight if you start to tumble (walls, railings, heavy furniture, a good friend, etc.)

Always turn the lights on when you walk into a dark room. The contribution of visual cues can reinforce your balance.

By all means use extra caution in situations where a fall could cause serious problems: on a precipice, at a crosswalk, etc.

Avoid or at least use extra caution around rough, uneven surfaces: gravel, debris, etc.

Wear lightweight shoes with soft soles. Lightness can help compensate for weakness and soft soles allow your feet to adjust more quickly due to the greater force you can apply.

This is all common sense, but being aware of your weakness and taking precautions can prevent serious injury.