Meniere's Disease

What is Meniere's disease?

Meniere's disease is a disorder of the inner ear that can cause vertigo, hearing loss, tinnitus, and a feeling of fullness or pressure in the ear.


Who's at risk for Meniere's disease?

Meniere's disease can occur at any age, but it typically affects individuals between the ages of 40 and 60. Women are slightly more likely than men to develop the condition.


What causes Meniere's disease?

The exact cause of Meniere's disease is unknown, but it is thought to be related to a buildup of fluid in the inner ear.


How does Meniere's disease start?

Meniere's disease typically begins with episodes of vertigo, which can last anywhere from 20 minutes to several hours. The vertigo is often accompanied by hearing loss, tinnitus, and a feeling of fullness or pressure in the ear.


What are the symptoms of Meniere's disease?

Symptoms of Meniere's disease may include:

  • Vertigo: A spinning sensation that can cause dizziness, nausea, and vomiting.
  • Hearing loss: This may be temporary or permanent and typically affects one ear.
  • Tinnitus: A ringing, buzzing, or other noise in the ear.
  • Feeling of fullness or pressure in the ear.


How is Meniere's disease diagnosed?

Diagnosis of Meniere's disease typically involves a physical exam, hearing tests, and imaging tests to rule out other causes of the symptoms.


How can Meniere's disease be treated?

Treatment for Meniere's disease may include:

  • Medications: Anti-nausea medications and diuretics may be prescribed to manage symptoms.
  • Vestibular rehabilitation: This type of physical therapy can help improve balance and reduce vertigo.
  • Hearing aids: These may be recommended to improve hearing loss.
  • Surgery: In severe cases, surgery may be recommended to relieve pressure in the inner ear.


What complications may occur with Meniere's disease?

Complications of Meniere's disease may include:

  • Injury from falls due to vertigo
  • Long-term hearing loss
  • Anxiety or depression related to the condition


How can I prevent Meniere's disease?

There is no known way to prevent Meniere's disease, but managing underlying conditions such as high blood pressure and reducing stress may help reduce the risk of developing the condition.


Long-term management of Meniere's disease

Long-term management of Meniere's disease may involve:

  • Avoiding triggers: Certain foods, stress, and lack of sleep can trigger symptoms of Meniere's disease.
  • Continuing treatment: Regular treatment and follow-up with a healthcare provider can help manage symptoms.
  • Making lifestyle changes: Managing stress, maintaining a healthy diet, and getting enough sleep can help reduce symptoms.


What is recent research saying about Meniere's disease?

Recent research on Meniere's disease includes:

  • Researchers are exploring new therapies, such as intratympanic injections, to help manage symptoms.
  • A recent study found that a low-sodium diet may be effective in reducing symptoms of Meniere's disease.
  • Researchers are also exploring the use of cognitive-behavioral therapy to help manage the anxiety and stress related to Meniere's disease.


Where can I go for more information on Meniere's disease?

The American Academy of NeurologyAmerican Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgeryand the Vestibular Disorders Association are helpful resources for information on Meniere's disease. It is important to work closely with a healthcare provider for guidance and support in managing Meniere's disease.