Title: A little sunlight behind VERY DARK, DARK, CLOUDS!
Creation Date: 5 Aug 16
● This was the closest photo I could find to express my mood for the past week. A little sunlight behind a massive DARK cloud. Well, maybe my dark clouds of information (below) will be useful to someone else…I can hope.
By the way, ‘WTHE’stands for ‘What the Hell Else’? You know you are asking for a world of hurt when you even think that thought!
Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS)…Rheumatoid Arthritis…Osteoporosis!!! Isn’t that enough?!? No, obviously not.
A little over a week ago, my ENT specialist came to the conclusion that now I also have Ménière’s disease!
» What is Ménière’s disease (MD)?!?
Ménière’s disease is a rare disorder that affects the inner ear. It can cause vertigo, tinnitus, hearing loss, and a feeling of pressure deep inside the ear. 1 in 2,000 people may have MD.
So, yeah, I’m not feeling all that thrilled about…anything.
I have hearing impairment in my left ear—sounds now sound like discordant noise. Music does not sound correct—not so nice. Voices, especially a lot of them, are painful to listen to. It is frankly a little difficult to understand what someone is saying exactly, unless I am nearby the speaker. Forget about dogs barking, cats fighting, traffic noise, events blasting…it is sort of like auditory torture. There is this never-ending tinnitus and the sensation of my head being stuck in an empty barrel.
There is also the imbalance issue: that seems to cause a low nauseam most of the time. There is a pressure feeling in the ear too, and that feeling causes low-grade head pain.
The major problem that can occur with Ménière’s disease, well, besides deafness that is, is Vertigo! Can’t wait! (being sarcastic if you can’t tell). Vertigo can happen anytime, and that is VERY dangerous because you typically end up falling to the ground due to total loss of balance, the worst drunken feeling EVER, and that, apparently, causes EXTREME nausea and vomiting…well…this can affect a Ménière’s patient for hours (perhaps 4 or more hours at a time), so I’ve learned.
Since my symptoms and diagnosis are relatively new, I’ve not had the ‘joy’ of a Vertigo attack…yet. So far, a kind of constant bit of dizziness is where I’m at. Maybe that is where the little bit of sunshine is coming from.
Before I saw my ENT doctor, I was thinking that I may have Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease (AIED). Why? Because of my Ankylosing Spondylitis: about 7% of AS patients have AIED. Another (of the considerable) Vestibular diseases that can cause my symptoms is a tumor—an MRI scan would show that.
Nevertheless, my ENT was fairly sure I now have Ménière’s disease. Fantastic! More diseases to own!
I’m pretty down about this…no kidding myself. BUT HEY, look on the BRIGHT SIDE, right, it could be bilateral Ménière’s disease, affecting both ears. From what I’ve researched, unfortunately, unilateral disease often starts affecting both ears at some point.
Oh, and did I mention…there’s no cure for Ménière’s disease.
This disease tends to affect patients in many ways: for example, I’ve read that it’s not a great idea to drive when having this disease. I suppose riding a motorcycle or flying a plane is out of the question? Well, what about walking about on your own? What happens if you have a catastrophic vertigo attack? SERIOUSLY! Can you count on anyone having the common sense to help; or, will the crowd of curious spectators watching you having the attack…just watch, and then, “Move along folks, there’s nothing to see here!” Are these the same concerns that other Ménière’s patients think about…I wonder…
I guess there is nothing more to see here, but I just had this on my mind and maybe the information is useful to anyone else.
Here is one site with some general information about MD…there are several more good sites, but data differs slightly from one site to another.
Here is a website covering all sorts of Vestibular diseases, including MD: