Intratympanic Steroid Injection Increasing Pulsatile TinnitusPlease read our disclaimer Return to Index. In extremely severe cases of episodic vertigo, such as due to Meniere's diseasetreatments administered into the middle ear may be considered. This is a near last resort treatment for persons who have severe attacks of vertigo. The goal of these intratympanlc is to affect the inner ear using medication that enters the ear through the round window. The presumption is that side effects of intratympanic steroid injection mechanism of disease is immune mediated.
intratypanic steroids for meniere's disease
Please read our disclaimer Return to Index. In extremely severe cases of episodic vertigo, such as due to Meniere's disease , treatments administered into the middle ear may be considered. This is a near last resort treatment for persons who have severe attacks of vertigo.
The goal of these treatments is to affect the inner ear using medication that enters the ear through the round window. The presumption is that the mechanism of disease is immune mediated. Corticosteroids decrease inflammation in the ear and may increase labyrinthine circulation. There also has been some suggestion that steroids affect the salt metabolism in the inner ear. This last idea seems odd to us in that the usual medication used -- dexamethasone -- has very little if any mineralocorticoid effect.
Steroids can be given orally, and this method is discussed here. The author of this article, Dr. Hain, is not enthusiastic about IT steroids for Meniere's disease. The reason is that the drug is gone in a few days, and even if it works, it has to be repeated every 3 months. It also seems to us to be a far inferior method to use of IT gentamicin , which provides a durable solution.
This has also been noted by others Casani et al, ; Gabra and Saliba, Steroid injections may be reasonable when one is attempting to diagnose autoimmune inner ear disease. It may also be justifiable for sudden hearing loss.
Steroid injections like endolymphatic shunt surgery for Meniere's disease are a procedure that seems to be very popular as a surgical intervention.
Both procedures lack a good rationale, but they are rarely do harm. As the dictum goes -- "Primum, no nocere" -- First do no harm. Nevertheless, steroid injections are rapidly growing in popularity. At the present time in the author's practice in Chicago , he will recommend it to a patient who is having a flare of well defined Meniere's disease, or a sudden hearing loss.
The reasons for the lack of enthusiasm are given in the author's article on Meniere's disease itself , but in essence, it doesn't seem to work unless it is given over a long period, and there are alternatives i. Still, things are changing with this treatment, and it does no harm. Injections of steroid can be given through the ear drum, by way of a small needle figure 1B , or administered as drops through a ventilation tube figure 1A.
IT steroids allows one to treat one side, without affecting the other. It also avoids complications of systemic steroids, may avoid surgery, and may work when other treatments fail. The dexamethasone solution should be prepared fresh preservatives can cause intense pain. A mixture last about 1 week. Make two small incisions - -one for the injection and one for ventilation.
Allow the dexamethasone to warm to room temperature to avoid dizziness. Inject the dexamethasone through the posterior incision Minor, Follow up in weeks. Repeat the injection at weeks if vertigo recurs. Thus they used both a different location and a lower dose than the later study of Minor in Later studies tend to use even more drug such as 24 mg e. Haynes et al, for similar endeavors. However, there was no consensus found on doses or treatment protocols. Most practitioners use a simple protocol of an injections of steroids, delivered weekly or longer intervals.
However, the most successful methods reported to date, such as the studies of Sennaroglu and Boleas, involve a longer periods of administration. Dexamethasone has the longest half-life: We would expect that steroids in the inner ear would persist for a shorter period than in the body, because in the inner ear, steroids are not at equilibrium with the body at large. Thus, one would think that all single injection protocols would be likely to fail.
Certain steroids seem to cause more pain than others. Solumedrol was reported by Parnes to be more painful A trial is being conducted using a gel form of steroids to extend the duration of effect for Meniere's. We feel similarly about this as we do for steroids in general -- it is a temporary treatment for a permanent disease.
The simplest procedure and the least expensive reported so far is that of Sennaroglu et al They had simply had the patient administer dexamethasone themselves through a ventilation tube. A tube is placed in the posterio-inferior quadrant of the TM. Patients are instructed to lie on their side and place 5 drops into the affected ear once every other day.
After the instillation, they are to lie with the ear upright for 15 minutes. We are a bit dubious about this method, as we think that it would be difficult to be know how much steroids entered the ear, and also one would think that perforations would be more common.
While ITS is generally thought to be safe, there are many possible probably minor complications see Doyle et al, The common risks are pain, short-lasting vertigo, otitis media, and tympanic membrane perforation. Pain during the insertion of the drug is common. This is not unexpected as puncturing ones body with needles is usually painful.
Pain from the drops themselves are rare, especially if dexamethasone is used, but preservatives in the drops may be painful. It seems to be even more rare in patients who have direct injections. When otitis media occurs with a tube in place, the option of using a ear drop such as Floxin is available.
Perforation of the ear drum is a possible complication. Topf et al reported that 1. All three of their perforation patients recieved multiple injections. This is logical as steroids impair wound healing and one might expect slower closure. Perforation risk is increased by radiation of the ear. This complication can generally be handled by an otologist and the perforation can be closed.
However, in our view, the repairs are rarely as "good" as the original equipment, and we think it is best to reserve repeated steroid injections for severe problems that are steroid responsive. Temporary vertigo can occur when the solutions being used are not at body temperature or if the solutions contain lidocaine. Most patients are able to walk around unassisted after minutes after injections. Permanent vertigo and imbalance have not been reported. Otologic surgeons may bill moderately for this 45 minute procedure, possibly repeated 4 times per year.
Other similar methods of treating Menieres, such as use of gentamicin instead, cost the same amount but don't need multiple repetitions. Thus, the cost to the health care system of gentamicin treatment is much lower than steroid treatment. Generally it is provided by ear doctors Otologists -- a subspecialty of ENT. In our clinical practice in Chicago, Dr. Mamikoglu provides this treatment.
Variants are common, and many of the variants seem no better than placebo. We advise careful investigation of the protocol offered by your local practitioners.
We favor the longer durations methods described above. Be sure that someone can monitor your treatment closely. Steroid injected into the middle ear. Multiple injections are usually required for this method.
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