My research is focused on studying the effects of strong static magnetic fields such as those in MRI machines on the vestibular system. The magnetic fields of MRI machines can induce a force in the inner ear that can cause dizziness and vertigo. This is a fundamentally new way of stimulating the vestibular system, and we are studying how the brain adapts to this stimulus.
I have a number of clinical research interests as well, including the pathophysiology of innear ear disorders such as superior semicircular canal dehiscence syndrome, Meniere's disease and bilateral vestibulopathy, as well as novel treatments including the development of a vestibular implant (led by Dr. Charles Della Santina).
Ward BK, Tan G X-J, Roberts DC, Della Santina CC, Zee DS, Carey JP. Strong Static Magnetic Fields Elicit Swimming Behaviors Consistent with Direct Vestibular Stimulation in Adult Zebrafish. PLoS ONE, 9(3): 19. e92109. Doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0092109, March, 2014. PMID: 24647586
Ward BK, Zee DS. Dizziness and Vertigo during MRI. New England Journal of Medicine, 375.21 (2016): e44. PMID: 27959734
Otero-Millan, J., Zee, D. S., Schubert, M. C., Roberts, D. C., Ward, B. K. (2017). Three-dimensional eye movement recordings during magnetic vestibular stimulation. Journal of Neurology, 264(1), 7-12.. PMID: 28271407
Ward BK, Carey JP, Minor LB. Superior Canal Dehiscence Syndrome: Lessons from the First 20 Years. Frontiers in Neurology. 2017 Apr 8:177. PMID: 28503164
Ward BK, Ashry Y, Poe DS. Patulous Eustachian Tube Dysfunction: Patient Demographics and comorbidities. Otology & Neurotology, 2017. 38(9): 1362-9. PMID: 28796094
Device for Magnetic Stimulation of the Vestibular System
Patent # US15668896