Chiropractic management of a 40-year-old female patient with Ménière disease

J Chiropr Med. 2010 Mar;9(1):22-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jcm.2009.12.007.


Objective: The purpose of this case report is to describe the chiropractic management of a patient with Ménière disease.

Clinical features: A 40-year-old woman presented with a diagnosis of Ménière disease including a 2-month history of vertigo and a 16-month history of left-sided tinnitus, low-frequency hearing loss, and aural fullness. The patient's other symptoms included left-sided neck pain, temporomandibular joint pain, and headaches. Examination revealed left-sided upper cervical joint dysfunction along with myofascial trigger points in the middle and upper trapezius muscle.

Intervention and outcome: Treatment included primarily high-velocity, low-amplitude spinal manipulation to the upper cervical and thoracic spine, along with soft-tissue trigger-point therapy, and stretching exercises. Within 2 weeks of treatment, the patient's tinnitus had resolved; and all other symptoms (including vertigo) were improved. The patient's headaches, neck pain, and vertigo were subsequently resolved within 3 months of treatment. The patient experienced only 2 minor episodes of self-resolving "light-headedness" over that time. After 2½ years of follow-up, any occasional episodes of mild aural fullness and/or light-headedness are either self-resolving or relieved with cervical spinal manipulation and soft-tissue treatment.

Conclusion: This case report suggests that chiropractic care, including upper cervical spinal manipulation and soft-tissue therapy, may be beneficial in treating some patients with Ménière disease.

Keywords: Chiropractic; Ménière disease; Spinal manipulation; Temporomandibular joint; Vertigo.