Patient will present as → a 32-year-old male with complaints of recurrent, episodic vertigo lasting up to 8 hours per episode for the past 3 months. The attacks generally last less than half an hour and are associated with decreased low-frequency hearing in the left ear along with nonpulsatile tinnitus in the ipsilateral ear. You obtain an audiogram which shows a low-frequency hearing loss in the left ear only.
Ménière syndrome is a disorder of the endolymphatic compartment with the classic triad of episodic vertigo, unilateral low-frequency sensorineural hearing loss, and tinnitus.
"To differentiate labyrinthitis from Meniere's disease on your exam look for tinnitus and episodic symptoms. Labyrinthitis is similar to Meniere's disease except that labyrinthitis causes continuous symptoms and has the combination of vertigo + hearing loss and (although it can) is less likely to present with tinnitus on exam questions."
Pt will often present with episodic peripheral vertigo lasting 1-8 hours with nystagmus, nausea, and vomiting.
The diagnosis of Meniere disease, made clinically, is primarily one of exclusion. Similar symptoms can result from vestibular migraine, viral labyrinthitis or neuritis, a cerebellopontine angle tumor (eg, acoustic neuroma), or a brain stem stroke
- Although bilateral Meniere disease can occur, bilateral symptoms increase the likelihood of an alternate diagnosis (eg, vestibular migraine)
Patients with suggestive symptoms should have an audiogram and an MRI (with gadolinium enhancement) of the CNS with attention to the internal auditory canals to exclude other causes
- Audiogram typically shows a low-frequency sensorineural hearing loss in the affected ear that fluctuates between tests
- The Rinne test and the Weber test also may indicate sensorineural hearing loss
Treatment with a low salt diet, diuretics (HCTZ + triamterene) to reduce aural pressure
- Should avoid caffeine/chocolate and ETOH because they can increase endolymphatic pressure
Acute labyrinthitis typically presents with an acute onset of continuous vertigo that lasts several days to a week and is associated with nausea and vomiting. It does not have any associated auditory or neurologic symptoms.
Positional vertigo occurs following changes in head positioning with very brief, less than 1 minute, episodes. Nystagmus occurs following the position change.
Acoustic neuroma typically presents with hearing loss and tinnitus. The neuroma grows slowly and central compensatory mechanisms can prevent or minimize the vertigo. Vertigo, when present, is continuous and not episodic.
Epley maneuver is used to treat benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.
Diuretics and low-sodium diet
Broad-spectrum antibiotics and Ibuprofen
Broad-spectrum antibiotics and ibuprofen are used to treat otitis media, not Meniere's disease.
Scopolamine transdermal patch
A scopolamine patch is useful for treatment of a single episode, but not long-term management.
Labyrinthitis is an acute onset of continuous, usually severe vertigo lasting several days to a week, accompanied by hearing loss and tinnitus.
Benign paroxysmal positioning vertigo
Benign paroxysmal positioning vertigo is a type of vertigo associated with changes in head position, often rolling over in bed.
Vestibular neuronitis is a paroxysmal, usually single attack of vertigo that occurs without accompanying impairment of auditory function and will persist for several days to weeks before clearing.