In the 1860s, a French doctor named Prosper Meniere suggested that Meniere’s disease symptoms involved the inner ear instead of the brain, as opposed to what was believed at that time. This led to the medical condition being named after the Dr Meniere.
Healthcare concept meaning Meniere’s Disease with sign on the piece of paper. Meniere’s disease is a disorder that affects an individual’s inner ear. In most patients, this disease impacts only one ear.
Usually, the patient feels as if they are spinning. This leads to a ringing sensation and a feeling of pressure or fullness in the affected ear.
The symptoms associated with Meniere’s disease are as follows:
- Hearing loss: In the early stages of this condition, hearing loss is one of the most common symptoms. At this stage, this symptom reappears frequently. In the following months, patients might experience permanent hearing loss.
- Recurring vertigo episodes: The patient experiences sudden spinning sensations that occur for a minimum of 20 minutes to a maximum of several hours. However, these episodes do not last for more than 24 hours.
- Tinnitus: Tinnitus feels like a ringing sensation in the ears. Apart from this, other sounds include buzzing, roaring, or hissing.
- Fullness: There might be a feeling of aural fullness and pressure in the affected ear.
Apart from these primary Meniere’s disease symptoms, some patients also experience anxiety, blurry vision, trembling, nausea, diarrhea, cold sweats, and a rapid pulse.
It’s important to note that the symptoms disappear completely after an episode. This is only for a particular period.
The exact set of Meniere’s disease causes is unknown. However, certain factors that contribute to an increase in the chances of being affected with this disease have been specified.
One or more factors can influence the occurrence of Meniere’s disease:
- Fluid damage
- Low abnormal immune response
- Migraine headaches
- Accidental blow to the head or surrounding areas
- Viral infections
- Genetic predisposition to Meniere’s disease
Types of Meniere’s disease
The Meniere’s disease types include the following:
- Classical Meniere’s disease
- Vestibular Meniere’s disease
- Cochlear Meniere’s disease
- Reverse Meniere’s disease
- Utricular Meniere’s disease
Patients must visit a doctor or ENT specialist if they experience two vertigo episodes of around 20 minutes each, a feeling of fullness in the ear, and hearing loss.
We can confirm if all possible causes of these symptoms are not responsible for the patient’s condition. Further, Meniere’s disease diagnosis is performed with the following methods:
- Hearing assessment: Hearing ability is checked with the help of audiometry.
- Videonystagmography (VNG): In this test, a balance function evaluation is performed, which checks eye movement. The inner ear comprises balance-related sensors linked to the muscles responsible for eye movement.
- Posturography: This diagnostic test determines which body parts have the highest dependency and which led to the most problems contributing to Meniere’s disease. The aspects checked include vision, inner ear function, muscles, tendons, and joints. The patient is given a safety harness and asked to stand bare feet on a platform. Then they are asked to balance their body weight under different conditions.
- Vestibular-evoked myogenic potentials testing: This diagnostic test is also known as VEMP testing. The patient’s response to sudden and loud noises is analyzed. It also helps to monitor Meniere’s disease till complete recovery.
- Electrocochleography: This test checks the inner ear’s response to different sounds. Any abnormal fluid buildup in the inner ear is also evaluated.
Other Meniere’s disease diagnosis tests include video head impulse tests, rotary-chair testing, and imaging tests to check for adverse conditions.
Certain medical solutions can contribute to Meniere’s disease treatment to an appreciable extent. These include the following options:
We recommend certain medications, including meclizine or diazepam and promethazine, to treat motion sickness and nausea, respectively.
Diuretics and steroids are prescribed to patients depending on their overall health status.
Diuretics prevent unwanted fluid retention in the body. Steroids help treat immune system issues for a better body response to factors impacting the body. These medications effectively contribute to patients’ recovery.
- Physical therapy: Physical therapists might recommend a series of exercises to help with patients’ imbalance and dizziness. Patients can also stay active and engage in certain activities, such as walking, to speed up the results.
- Vestibular rehabilitation therapy: This is an effective Meniere’s disease treatment option that helps with balance issues that occur between two repeated vertigo episodes.
- Positive pressure therapy: Experts conduct this non-invasive therapy with the help of a Meniett pulse generator. This device applies a certain pulse of pressure to the affected ear canal.
- Surgical procedures: These might include an endolymphatic sac procedure, labyrinthectomy, and vestibular nerve section. Each of these surgical procedures ensures that the damaged part associated with the affected ear is removed properly for a timely Meniere’s disease cure.
Some of the proven ways to prevent this condition include the following:
- Quit smoking
- Gradually shift towards a low-salt diet
- Limit caffeine intake
- Perform balancing exercises regularly
- Keep stress at bay and live happily
Meniere’s disease is a disorder that must be diagnosed at the right time to avoid the adverse progression of the condition. We recommend that patients connect with a medical expert to assess the condition if they experience the specific set of symptoms outlined earlier.
At the CK Birla Hospital, we ensure that every patient receives quality treatment for the diagnosed medical conditions with robust post-operative care. Visit your nearest facility or book an appointment with our ENT specialist Dr. Anish Gupta.