Meniere’s Disease – Room Spinning? You may be suffering.

  • By admin
  • November 29, 2016
  • Comments Off on Meniere’s Disease – Room Spinning? You may be suffering.

Meniere’s is a disorder that produces a group of symptoms: sudden attacks of whirling dizziness, tinnitus or head noise, a feeling of pressure or fullness in the ear, and a fluctuating hearing loss. It has puzzled researchers for years. If there are particular triggers, identifying and avoiding them is a major step in controlling the disease. This might last 20 minutes or several hours, before symptoms improve. This information is then used to control movements of the eye and the skeletal muscles so that adjustments can be made to keep the body balanced and orientated. Taking all of this into consideration, one would call this an unusual situation, or at least confusing. Also, it has two components – one that is potassium-sparing and the other sodium-depleting, which is a safer combination overall and has fewer side effects than some other diuretics.

Tinnitus and fullness of the ear may come and go with changes in hearing, occur during or just before attacks, or be constant. Therefore you need to figure out what could be causing it. No two patients experience the exact same symptoms of Meniere’s disease in the same order. It converts sound waves into electrical signals, which are then sent via the auditory nerve to the brain. Some studies suggest that there may be a genetic component to Meniere’s disease but this remains debated. This is to probe after exposure, abnormal symptoms. The sounds can vary from person to person, but the common link is that they do not have an external source.

At the moment there is no cure but there are treatments that manage the symptoms or try to reduce the number of attacks. This new theory, if proven, would provide many new avenues of treatment for this previously poorly-controlled disorder. Diuretics can be taken to decrease the body’s water retention which aims to reduce the quantity of fluid in the inner ear. Discomfort from loud noises may also occur in the afflicted ear. In some of these, such as vertigo and tinnitus, the dizziness is similar, but the hearing remains normal. Its cause is unknown. Electronystagmography (ENG)/ VNG (Videonystagmography) are the most common tests for balance and Meniere’s disease.

An ENG (electronystagmogram) may be performed to evaluate balance function. I wondered how we’d manage our lives, never knowing when it would strike. Variations of Meniere’s disease exist. Additionally, depending upon the results, several other tests may be ordered, such as BERA (brainstem evoked response audiometry), to look at the functioning of the auditory nerve and brain; an ENG (electronystagmography), to assess possible damage to the inner ear balance system; an ECoG (elecrocochleography) to determine if the inner ear has an overabundance of fluid; and an MRI to visualize the nerves and brain. One type aims to relieve pressure on the inner ear and the other servers the vestibular nerve so that information can not be sent from the vestibular system to the brain. Caloric tests are used to assess the functioning of the ampulla of the horizontal semicircular canal at low frequencies. Hearing aids and cochlear implants are the most commonly selected options for improving hearing for those with Meniere’s disease.

There are a range of hearing aids available and your audiologist will help you select the best device for you. A nerve in the inner ear called the eighth nerve carries the signals to the brain. but certainly the tinnitus has a cause. There may also be an intermittent hearing loss early in the disease, especially in the low pitches, but a fixed hearing loss involving tones of all pitches commonly develops in time. Cochlear implants (also known as bionic ears) are electrical devices surgically inserted into the inner ear. The presence of multiple sensory hyperacuities in both patients suggests that the primary abnormality was not confined to the auditory system, and the intensely visceral and emotional response to sound stimulation suggests limbic system rather than cortical involvement. The electrical signal is then transmitted to the implant within the ear which stimulates the auditory nerve allowing the user to hear.

Cochlear implants may be suitable for those with bilateral (both ears) profound hearing loss due to Meniere’s disease.

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