If you or anyone you has Meniere’s disease, you know how devastating it can be to living daily life with this condition. It may be as simple as ringing in the ears, a headache or mild dizziness, or as severe as crippling vertigo, nausea, and vomiting lasting for days. Whether mild or extreme, neither is enjoyable.
What it is:
Meniere’s disease is characterized by the American Academy of Otolaryngology as having several key symptoms including:
- Hearing loss
- A sensation of fullness in the ears.
In Meniere’s disease these symptoms come in episodes that may last only 20 minutes or up to 4 hours. The common cause is believed to be abnormal amounts of the fluid that is in the inner ear; this fluid is how the body establishes balance and relates that information to the brain through the Vestibulocochlear nerve/Cranial Nerve VIII. This typically happens in adults from the ages of 20-50 years old, equally affecting men and women.1
What to do:
The simple treatments for Meniere’s vary from: low salt diets, anti-vertigo medications, injections made into the inner ear, and invasive surgery. Since there is not one particular known cause the results differ from case to case depending on the treatment.
M. Hülse, Professor of ENT at Heidelberg University, found that in 259 patients with Meniere’s disease type symptoms could be linked to abnormalities in the upper neck. This area is technically termed the “upper cervical spine” and consists of the C0/Occipit, C1/Atlas, and C2/Axis bones. He found in a study of 62 patients that hearing deficits could be reversible under the use of chiropractic care.2
Upper Cervical chiropractors utilize techniques and tools to assess the integrity of the upper neck and make a specific correction if necessary. If there is a misalignment between C0/C1/C2 it may cause symptoms like Meniere’s disease. One upper cervical chiropractor examined and adjusted 139 patients who were medically diagnosed with Meniere’s disease. 136 of the 139 experienced “an absence or dramatic reduction of symptoms, especially vertigo” within one or two specific adjustments.3 All 139 patients reported previous injury to the neck.
If you have Meniere’s disease or any of the symptoms associated it is crucial to have the upper neck examined by an Upper cervical chiropractor.
1. American Academy of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery. Meniere's Disease. http://www.entnet.org/content/menieres-disease (accessed 2/2/201).
2. Hulse M. The Cervical Vertebra as a Cause of Hearing Disorders. German HNO Conference, Muenster 1993,42:604613.
3. Burcon MT. Upper cervical specific protocol and results for 139 patients with medically diagnosed meniere’s disease. , J Vertebral Subluxation Res November 14, 2010:1-10.
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