Ear
Inflammatory / infectious / autoimmune / systemic disorders
Menieres Disease

Author: Nat Pernick, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 8 February 2018, last major update October 2013

Copyright: (c) 2002-2018, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.

PubMed Search: Menieres disease [title]

Cite this page: Pernick, N. Menieres Disease. PathologyOutlines.com website. http://www.pathologyoutlines.com/topic/earmeniere.html. Accessed July 18th, 2018.
Definition / general
  • Also called endolymphatic hydrops
  • Idiopathic disorder of inner ear associated with episodic attacks of vertigo, fluctuating sensorineural hearing loss, tinnitus and sensation of aural fullness
  • Incidence varies from 7.5 per 100K in France to 157 per 100K in England
  • 60% women, peaks in 40s to 60s but wide age range
  • Rarely occurs in children (J Laryngol Otol 2006;120:343)
  • Associated with HLA B8/DR3
  • May be due to accumulation of endolymph in membranous labyrinth, perhaps due to inadequate absorption by endolymphatic sac
Treatment
  • Dietary modification, intermittent dehydration, diuretics, vasodilators in increase microcirculation of ear
  • 60 - 80% improve
  • Surgery includes shunting and decompression of endolymphatic sac (Laryngoscope 2005;115:1454), labyrinthectomy, sectioning of vestibular nerve
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Initially involves cochlear duct and saccule
  • Later entire endolymphatic system with dilation, rupture and collapse of membranous labyrinth with possible fistula
  • May have severe atrophic changes with loss of cochlear neurons
Microscopic (histologic) images

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Section through cochlea