Correlates of Vertigo Attacks in Ménière’s Disease

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Abstract

Background:

Ménière’s disease is a medical condition that involves hearing loss, tinnitus and attacks of vertigo. The attacks can be severely disabling with nausea, dizziness, and aural sensations.

Method:

Three scales assessing the correlates of vertigo attacks in Ménière’s disease were developed and completed by 514 subjects diagnosed with the disease. The three scales measured were somatic sensations (SOM), psychological state (PSYCHOL), and situational characteristics (SIT) associated with an attack.

Results:

Psychometric properties of the three scales were investigated showing Cronbach’s alphas of 0.76, 0.80, and 0.62 for the three scales respectively. The results on the scales were related to disease progression. Principal components factor analyses showed that the SOM scale could be divided into two subscales: dizziness/vertigo/anxiety and sensations in the ear. The PSYCHOL scale showed an energy/awareness factor and a negative emotional state factor. The SIT scale, finally, showed two factors: environmental disturbances and stressful conditions.

Conclusions:

Knowledge of somatic, psychological and situational premonitory characteristics of attacks in Ménière’s disease could lead to improved therapy and counselling.

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