Meniere’s disease is a condition of the inner ear that causes sudden attacks of:
Feeling like the room is spinning around you (vertigo).
A ringing noise inside the ear (tinnitus).
Ear pressure felt deep inside the ear.
The exact cause of Meniere’s disease is unknown, but it's associated with a problem with pressure deep inside the ear.
Factors thought to increase your risk include:
Poor fluid drainage in your ear.
An immune system disorder.
Viral infection, such as meningitis
Family history of Meniere’s disease.
It's likely that Meniere’s disease is caused by a combination of factors.
During an attack of Meniere’s disease, you may:
feel dizziness with a spinning sensation
feel unsteady on your feet
feel sick or vomit
hear ringing, roaring or buzzing inside the ear
have a sudden drop in hearing
These symptoms, which typically happen all at once, can last minutes or hours, but most commonly last two to three hours.
The condition usually starts in one ear, but can spread to both ears over time.
It can take a day or two for the symptoms to disappear completely. You may feel tired after an attack.
Symptoms vary from person to person, but an attack of hearing loss without vertigo is uncommon.
Attacks can occur in clusters or several times a week, or they may be separated by weeks, months or years.
Meniere’s disease most commonly affects people aged 20-60. It's uncommon in children.