Note: Material that was
Copyright © 2002 Thom Wright and previously
posted on this page with permission was removed March 30, 2007.
Many thanks to Thom for having permitted us to use it.
ABR -- Auditory brainstem response.
ACM -- Arnold Chiari Malformation.
Acoustic neuroma (AN) --Benign tumor, usually (but not always)
very small, on the vestibulocochlear (8th
cranial) nerve; usually treatable
by surgical removal, but some permanent loss of hearing and other
adverse consequences may result. Acoustic neuromas are also known as
vestibular schwannomas, acoustic neurinomas, and acoustic neurilemomas.
An acoustic neuroma can produce symptoms similar to the symptoms of
AIED -- Autoimmune inner ear disease.
AN -- Acoustic neuroma.
Arnold Chiari Malformation
(ACM) -- Medical condition that can exhibit symptoms similar to the
symptoms of Meniere's Disease.
Response (ABR) -- Clinical diagnostic test used in the differential
diagnosis of the symptoms of Meniere's Disease.
Autoimmune Inner Ear
Disease (AIED) -- Inner ear condition that can cause symptoms similar
to the symptoms of Meniere's Disease. There is a fine line
between AIED and suspected autoimmune-mediated Meniere's Disease.
BPPV -- Benign paroxysmal
betahistine dihydrochloride -- Generic equivalent of the brand name
Positional Vertigo (BPPV) -- Inner ear condition caused by dislocation
of "crystals"; easily and very successfully treatable with positional
Brain fog -- Some, but not
all, patients report, anecdotally, forgetfulness, memory loss,
disorientation. Many patients with chronic (long-term) medical
problems experience some form of this condition. "Brain fog" is
a term used by Meniere's Disease patients. Patients with other
medical problems use other terms for the same condition. This condition is not recognized in
the medical literature as a symptom of Meniere's Disease.
Patients may or may not have another disease or condition in addition
to Meniere's Disease.
CAT scan -- Computerized
axial tomagraphy scan.
(CT) or computerized axial tomagraphy (CAT) -- Computerized
x-ray scanning that virtually simulates on film the function of
tomagraphy (slicing frozen tissue very thinly for examination under a
CT -- Computerized
DDX, DDx -- Differential diagnosis.
DMZ -- Dexamethasone.
Dx -- Diagnosis.
Dexamethasone (DMZ) --
Corticosteroid sometimes used to treat Meniere's Disease by reducing
inflammation and suppressing the immune system.
A common brand name is Decadron.
Drop attack -- This term
can have two meanings.
Some patients get such
acute attacks of rotational vertigo that they suddenly drop to the
ground as if they have been struck by a sledgehammer. Patients are
totally helpless as the world seems to spin around them, and they
vomit severely from the resulting nausea. The attacks can last minutes
or hours. After the attacks finally subside, patients may sleep for
hours and sometimes for days. Some patients get such drop attacks
frequently, others experience them every year or two, and others not
at all. Most Meniere's patients call these acute attacks "drop
attacks." Some patients can sense a drop attack approaching
through a sudden increase in tinnitus and/or fullness, and/or a sudden
hearing loss, but other patients get no warning. Some patients
who have experienced drop attacks without warning fear driving because
they worry about the consequences should they experience a drop attack
Some would not use the
term "drop attack" to describe an acute attack as described above
(although most patients seem to do so). Some would say a "drop
attack" is properly used only to describe "Tumarkin's crises" or "otolithic
crises of Tumarkin"; they would use these terms to describe a sudden
drop to the ground without Meniere's symptoms, followed by an
immediate recovery by merely standing up again. As applied to
patients with Meniere's Disease, we believe this is the minority view,
and that most Meniere's patients use the term "drop attack," rightly
or wrongly, to describe an acute attack as described above.
However, as with all things Meniere's, there is room for disagreement.
Dx, dx’d -- Diagnosis,
ECoG, ECOG -- Electrochochleogram/electrocochleography.
EH -- Endolymphatic hydrops.
(ECoG, ECOG) -- Clinical diagnostic test used in the differential
diagnosis of the symptoms of Meniere's Disease. ECoG is
pronounced EEE-cog or eee-coe-GEE.
Endolymphatic hydrops (EH)
-- Accumulation of excessive inner ear fluid called endolymph due to
over-production or under-resorption.
Enbrel -- Immuno-suppressant
drug sometimes used for chronic (long-term) treatment of some cases of
Meniere's Disease when an autoimmune etiology (cause) is suspected.
(ENG) -- Clinical diagnostic test used in the differential diagnosis
of the symptoms of Meniere's Disease.
ENT -- Informal term for
an ear, nose, and throat doctor (otolaryngologist or
Gentamicin (gent) --
Antibiotic drug with ototoxic properties. "Ototoxic" means toxic
to the inner ear. Gentamicin is used in the treatment of
Meniere's Disease for its ototoxic properties (not for its antibiotic
properties). Gentamicin destroys the little
hairs that are the ends of the vestibulocochlear (8th cranial) nerve,
located in the inner ear structure called the vestibule.
Grommets -- See pressure
-- Generic name for a diuretic drug used in the treatment of Meniere's
Disease. Also used in the treatment of high blood pressure and
other conditions. Brand names include
Diazide and Maxzide.
Herpes simplex virus (HSV)
-- Virus suspected as a possible factor in the cause of Meniere's
Disease. No research establishes HSV as a cause or the cause of
Meniere's Disease, but more research seems to be in order.
Hx -- History (medical).
IEH -- Idiopathic endolymphatic
Idiopathic -- Cause
hydrops (IEH) -- Endolymphatic hydrops (see above) resulting from an
unknown cause. Many researchers equate this condition with
Meniere's Disease, but other researchers believe that there are other
etiologies for some or all Meniere's Disease.
Intratympanic (IT) --
Tthrough the tympanic membrane (ear drum).
Also called transtympanic (TT).
IT -- Intratympanic.
Maladie de Meniere -- French for
Meniere's Disease. "Maladie" means "disease."
MD -- Meniere's Disease.
Disease (MD) -- See our Home/Start Page. (German: Morbus Meniere.
French: Maladie de Meniere.) How does one pronounce
"Meniere's Disease"? Any way one
chooses. Some folks believe that there is only one way to
pronounce any term, but the rest of us won't want to judge our
physicians by their pronunciation of this disease. Fans of
American English and Merriam-Webster
dictionaries will be interested in this
online pronunciation. Fans of the
American Heritage American
English Dictionary will be interested in this
MM -- Morbus Meniere,
German for Meniere's Disease. "Morbus" means "disease"; "Morbus
Meniere" means "Disease of Meniere"). For unknown reasons, this
abbreviation is used on the Internet by many Meniere's patients.
However, "MM" is not generally used within the medical
community. The term "MM" doesn't appear even one time in PubMed.
here to see for yourself.) If you use the term "MM" when
talking to your doctors, they will likely not know what you mean and
they will think that you are ill-informed (a polite way of saying
"dumb"). If one must use an acronym, "MD" is the acronym used by
medical professionals, despite the fact that it can also stand for
MS -- Multiple sclerosis.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) --
Multiple sclerosis may exhibit symptoms similar to the symptoms of
Methotrexate (MTX) --
Immuno-suppressant drug sometimes used for chronic (long-term)
treatment of rheumatoid (autoimmune-mediated) arthritis and, lately,
for some cases of Meniere's Disease when an autoimmune etiology
(cause) is suspected).
MTX -- Methotrexate.
Neurotologist (also known as
otoneurologist) -- Doctor who specializes in disorders of the ear and
of the vestibulocochlear
(8th cranial) nerve. In the U.S., there are "boards" that
certify physician specialists. The umbrella organization for all
24 boards that certify physician specialities is the
American Board of Medical Specialties
(ABMS). One of those boards is the
American Board of Otolaryngology (ABOTO).
That board certifies otolaryngologists (also known as
otorhinolaryngologists). It also certifies the subspecialty of
Neurotology. A booklet at the ABOTO website, in .pdf format,
provides information on the qualifications for a board-certified
neurotologist as well as the board's definition of a board-certified
Otolithic crisis of Tumarkin -- See
-- See ENT.
Otologist -- Doctor
specializing in treatment of the ear.
Otoneurologist -- See
PE tubes -- Pressure equalization
PLF -- Perilymph fistula.
Pressure equalization (PE)
tubes -- Also known as "ventilation tubes," tympanostomy tubes,
and (principally Australia) as "grommets." Tubes inserted into
the tympanic membrane (ear drum) to equalize air pressure between the
outer ear and the middle ear, usually when the Eustachian tube (a
bodily structure that normally accomplishes air pressure equalization)
becomes blocked due to infection or otherwise.
Perilymph fistula (PLF) --
Condition in which an opening occurs in the round or oval windows that
separate the middle ear from the inner ear) (the "perilymph" part is
somewhat of a misnomer). Perilymph fistula may produce symptoms
similar to the symptoms of Meniere's Disease.
Px -- Prognosis.
Rx -- Prescription.
hydrops SEH -- A form of endolymphatic hydrops (EH) (see above)
resulting secondarily from some primary event, such as head trauma. SEH is not Meniere's Disease, because the cause is
SEH -- Secondary endolymphatic hydrops.
Serc -- A brand name of
the generic drug betahistine hydrochloride.
Sensorineural hearing loss
(SNL) -- Hearing loss due to nerve damage.
This is the type of hearing loss produced by Meniere's Disease.
SNL -- Sensorineural hearing loss.
Sx -- Symptoms.
T -- Tinnitus.
Tinnitus (T) -- A
sound heard when there is no actual external sound to hear.
Often called "ringing in the ears." However, the sound can be
thumping, whining, or many other sounds, not just ringing. There
are two valid ways to pronounce "tinnitus": TIN-it-tus or
therapy (TRT) -- Usually highly effective treatment of tinnitus.
The tinnitus isn't reduced, but the patient learns to ignore the sound
(a process called habituation) to the point where a patient is unaware
of the sound.
Transtympanic (TT) -- See
Tumarkin's crisis -- See
TRT -- Tinnitus retraining
TT -- See intratympanic.
Tx -- Treatment (medical);
medical treatment plan.
Vestibular nerve section
(VNS), vestibular neurectomy (VN) -- A surgical procedure in
which the vestibular branch of the
vestibulocochlear (8th cranial)
nerve is severed near its junction with the brain.
Vestibular neurectomy --
See vestibular nerve section.
therapy (VRT) -- Mostly physical balance rehabilitation therapy to
help the body adjust to the loss of vestibular function, including
lose due to Meniere's Disease.
VN -- Vestibular neurectomy.
VNS -- Vestibular nerve section.
VRT -- Vestibular rehabilitation