Correlation of Objective Audiometric and Caloric Function in Ménière’s Disease

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Abstract

Objective

Ménière’s disease affects the vestibular and audiologic systems; however, little is known about the relationship between audiometric and caloric function with increasing duration of disease. We employed a novel methodology to understand the longitudinal correlation between audiometric and caloric function in Ménière’s patients.

Study Design

Case series with chart review.

Setting

Neuro-otologic tertiary care practice.

Subjects and Methods

Charts of 19 patients with unilateral Ménière’s disease, as classified by the 1995 American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Foundation criteria, were examined. We included patients with ≥2 videonystagmograms and audiograms. We excluded those with bilateral Ménière’s, prior audiovestibular destruction, or symptoms suggesting concomitant vestibular pathology. Spearman’s rank correlation of audiometric status (pure tone average [PTA], low PTA, and word recognition score [WRS]) and vestibular function (bithermal calorics) was performed. The study was Institutional Review Board approved (protocol 2015H0266).

Results

A total of 112 audiograms and 42 videonystagmographies were performed. There was a decline in affected ear hearing PTA and WRS with duration of disease (r = 0.602, P < .001, and r = −0.573, P < .001, respectively). Similarly, there was a decline in vestibular function with increasing duration of disease (r = 0.709, P < .001). There were moderate correlations between vestibular weakness and PTA, low PTA, and WRS (r = 0.464, P = .002; r = 0.498, P = .001; and r = −0.518, P = .001, respectively).

Conclusions

There is a correlation between decline in objective hearing and horizontal semicircular canal function with time. As expected, this correlation is not 1:1, indicating differential involvement of both systems. Understanding this relationship may assist in counseling patients with regard to prognosis, natural history, and therapeutic interventions.

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