Menieres disease.

Ennael By Ennael, 17th Oct 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>General Health>Diseases & Infections

To help provide support to people experiencing menieres disease.( vertigo).
and how to reduce its destructive impact on their lives by having other people who suffer this disease talk about it.
Many people who suffer from this disease feel alone and isolated.
They feel that no one understands what they are going through.
I know for I am a suffer of this disease and would like to form a support group so you dont feel your all alone in this world.

Menieres Disease.(Vertigo).

In 1861,Prosper Meniere (1799-1862) published the classic account of the disease which now bears his name.
His account was amazingly clear and comprehensive.
He described a condition which was characterised by sudden and recurring attacks of vertigo associated with nausea and vomiting, together with hearing loss, tinnitus and a blocked up feeling in the affected ear.
Between attacks the sufferers were in good health although often anxious as to when the next attacks might occur.
The disease is entirely confined to the inner ear.

There are three main stages through which the disease may progress.
The rate of progression from one stage to the next varies greatly between individuals.

Stage One.
The earliest stage of menieres disease is dominated by attacks of dizziness.
The attacks are not precipitated by sudden movements and cause a feeling of turning ( vertigo) which lasts for at least 15 minutes and sometimes persists for hours.
The vertigo is associated with nausea, usually vomitting and other symptions such as sweating or diarrhoea can occur.
Even slight head movements aggravate the situation.
It is best to lie down in bed in quiteness and until it passes.
Usually, the vertigo dominates all other feelings and the person may be unaware of other symptoms which indicate that they have menieres disease.
A full sensation within the ear may precede the attacks.
Often there is a noise (tinnitus) in the affected ear which builds up before the attack and may change its character while the dizziness is occuring, the hearing in the affected ear may become distorted during the attack.
After the attack the ear returns completely to normal.
By the time the patient sees a doctor, no signs remain and the doctor may be unable to detect any abnormality even using the most sophisticated tests.
About fifty percent of people can expect a remission of systems which may be permanent or last for many years even after several troublesome periods of attacks.

Stage Two.
At this stage the hearing loss and tinnitus has become permanment.
The hearing usually fluctuates together with increases in the feeling of fullness and the tinnitus.
For some people , these fluctuations may give warning of the onset of an attack of vertigo.
The attacks of vertigo tend to occur in clusters which can last several months.
The dizziness is still severe but the person becomes more accustomed to the vertigo, the vomiting may be avoided.
Even at this stage, long remissions from attacks of vertigo commonly occur.
About fifty percent of people will progress to stage three.

Stage Three.
This is sometimes called "burnt-out" menieres.
The hearing reaches a level at which it is difficult to recognise speech and no longer fluctuates.
Although the tinnitus remains, some adaptation is usual so the tinnitus is less bothersome.
The attacks of vertigo become mild or completely cease.
As half of the balance has been destroyed in the affected ear, the person has poor overall balance.
This can be a problem for older people who may have difficulty walking especially in the dark or when they are tired.
A few people may develop "drop attacks" which are sudden falls without warning and with little accompanying vertigo.
Usually these atacks will cease after one to two years but the drop attacks can certainly be a major concern especially for the elderly.

About ten percent of people have menieres disease in both ears from the onset and a further forty percent will develop some disease in the opposite ear.
The degree of involvement varies.

The causes of menieres disease in unknown although there is alot of current research and advances are being made.
The mechanism of the attacks is also becoming a bit clearer.
The underlying problem appears to be an over accumulation of one of the inner ear fluids called endolymph.
The excessive emdolymph is secreted into the inner ear where delicate cells lie that provide hearing abd balance.
The pressure of the excess fluid forms, it is cleared competely after each attack of vertigo, and the ear returns to its normal state.
As the disease progresses, the mechanism which clears fluid fails and the cells for hearing and balance are damaged so that the ear can no longer return to normal.

It appears that one of the mechanisms which clears the excess fluid is the endolymphatic sac.
Despite the name, it is not a passive receptacle of fluid but acts by secreting a hydrophilic substance( glyoprotein) which attracts the fluid into its lumen.
The sudden secretion of glycoprotein and removal of excess fluid is the mechanism which results in the attack of vertigo.

At the earliest stages of memieres disease a change of lifestyle and medical therapy can help.
Too much salt, caffeine and other stimulents in your diet can bring on the onset of attacks.
Therefore should be avoided if possible.
Also stress levels play a big factor in many people.
Often people with menieres disease like order and neatness in their lives.
When their life becomes too busy or when problems arise out of their control, attacks may occur.
People with menieres disease should take sufficient rest especially before travelling or important events.
Even basic home duties, shopping,and day to day tasks can cause attacks.
Many suffers of this disease can have attacks at work and which causes stress and prevents them from working and socialisation with other people.

I hope this explains how devastating and the suffering of this disease can become and the impact it makes on our lives.
I know for I am a suffer of this disease and at times it is so hard for me to cope with life.
I am afraid to drive.
I am afraid to go out alone.
I cannot be amongst crowds due to the noise that surrounds me as it causes me to stress and panick.
And much more ..which brings on my attacks..
I am letting people know that you are not alone if you suffer from this disease..and I hope that other people will understand if they have love ones or friends with this disease to be understanding and compassionate and do not get frustrated with them...for at times we are very frustrated with ourselves, as we find it hard to cope with a normal life.

Tags

Dizziness, Loss Of Hearing, Tinnitus, Vertigo

Meet the author

author avatar Ennael
I am a mother, a grandmother. I write about life experiences and spirituality.

Share this page

moderator Mark Gordon Brown moderated this page.
If you have any complaints about this content, please let us know

Comments

author avatar vpaulose
17th Oct 2011 (#)

Useful tips.May I request your friendship?

Reply to this comment

author avatar Ennael
17th Oct 2011 (#)

yes vpaulose.. you may request my friendship..:)

Reply to this comment

author avatar Buzz
17th Oct 2011 (#)

Very informative. Liked reading your page.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Ennael
17th Oct 2011 (#)

thankyou Buzz..:)

Reply to this comment

author avatar Ivyevelyn, R.S.A.
17th Oct 2011 (#)

I am sorry to hear that you have this medical problem, Ennael. I will check back with you.
Thank you for this page.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Ennael
17th Oct 2011 (#)

thankyou Ivyevelyn..
I tried to explain the best way I knew how about this condition..I didnt even know it existed or even heard of meneires ( vertigo) until it happened to me..I am finding that through some friends and people that I talk to about it...that they at least know some one who has it .. many are just in the first stages with this condition..I thought that I was all alone..as I have been having this for years ...I have it in both ears now..and my hearing as well as my balancing has deteriorated over time..( it can make you very depressed and you try and cope the best way you can..and it is hard even for your loved ones to understand what it is like ...and I know they feel powerless to help as they watch what you go through it..) so I thought I would write this not only for other people to understand ...but to help others who suffer with this ..to let them know their not alone...I am here if they need to talk about it..

Reply to this comment

author avatar Ivyevelyn, R.S.A.
17th Oct 2011 (#)

Sharing with others is so powerful and rewarding. I am willing to share my leukemia affliction with anyone who would be interested. We will hang in together.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Ennael
18th Oct 2011 (#)

so true Ivyevelyn...sharing with each other makes us come closer together...every one has a story to tell about their lives...some are lucky and to go through life with no ailments...and others have different issues.( be it mental..physical or everyday life in general)...talking about our lives closes the gap between being alone and a seperate individual and makes us come together as one...I would love to hear about your story about leukemia...and I am sorry to hear that you have this condition..and I am there for you if you ever need a shoulder to lean on..

Reply to this comment

author avatar Ivyevelyn, R.S.A.
19th Oct 2011 (#)

Thank you, Ennael. So glad you are there!

Reply to this comment

author avatar Denise O
23rd Oct 2011 (#)

Great information on menieres disease. My heart just goes out to those that suffer from vertigo. I too have bouts of it but, it's not chronic like those that have Menieres disease, bless their hearts. Good read. Thank you for sharing.:)

Reply to this comment

author avatar dak
3rd Nov 2011 (#)

Very informative. Liked reading your page.

Reply to this comment

Add a comment
Username
Can't login?
Password