MENIERE'S DISEASE, a form of auditory vertigo, first described by a French physician, Emile Antoine M6niere, in 1 86 1. It usually attacks persons of middle age whose hearing has been previously normal. A. Politzer gives the following as the principal causes: intense heat and exposure to the Sun, rheumatism, influenza, venereal diseases, anaemia and leukaemia. The disease presents itself in various forms, but the most usual is the apoplectofonn, due to haemorrhage into the labyrinth, followed by more or less complete deafness in either or both ears. The attack usually sets in with dizziness, noises in the ears, nausea, vomiting and staggering gait, and the patient may suddently fall down with loss of consciousness. The seizures are usually paroxysmal, occurring at irregular intervals of days or weeks. Between the attacks the equilibrium may be disturbed, there being marked nystagmus and unsteadiness of gait. The attacks of vertigo tend to become less frequent and may entirely pass away, but the deafness may remain permanent. The treatment is directed towards relieving the troublesome head symptoms by the application of cold compresses. The drug that has proved most serviceable in diminishing the dizziness is potassium iodide, administered daily for at least a month Politzer considers that the attacks may be averted by producing rarefaction of the air in the external meatus of the ear by means of a specially devised aspirating tube.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)