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Meniere disease
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed

Meniere disease

Contributors: Eve Tranchito, Paul C. Bryson MD, MBA
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed


Meniere disease is an inner ear disorder characterized by loss of balance and hearing that typically affects one ear. The typical clinical presentation includes a patient who has experienced at least 2 episodes of vertigo lasting at least 20 minutes in length, tinnitus, temporary hearing loss, and aural fullness. Furthermore, those who suffer from the disease may develop nausea, gait disturbances, and postural instability.

The precise cause has not been identified. Factors that may contribute to the disease are ear blockage or anatomical defects causing fluid buildup, abnormal immune responses, allergies, viral infections, genetic predispositions, head trauma, and migraines.

The most widely accepted pathophysiologic cause of the disease is endolymphatic hydrops (dysfunction of absorption and production of endolymph fluid).

Meniere disease may occur at any age, but it most commonly presents in adults aged 40-60. Its prevalence has been reported as high as 513/100 000.

There is currently no cure, but a range of treatments may be helpful in managing the condition. Treatment options include medications, salt restriction and diuretics, cognitive therapy, transtympanic injections, pressure pulse treatment, and surgery.


H81.09 – Ménière's disease, unspecified ear

13445001 – Meniere Disease

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Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls

  • Congenital anomalies
  • Autoimmune problems / Labyrinthitis
  • Cogan syndrome
  • Otosclerosis
  • Temporal bone neoplasms
  • Drug-induced ototoxicity
  • Vascular infarction of inner ear
  • Vestibular Migraine headache
  • Vestibular Labyrinthitis

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Last Reviewed:05/08/2019
Last Updated:01/19/2022
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Meniere disease
A medical illustration showing key findings of Meniere disease : Tinnitus, Aural fullness
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