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Meniere's syndrome – a psychosomatic disorder?

Discussion in 'Your Living Room' started by Mindosa, Jul 21, 2020.

  1. Mindosa

    Mindosa Member

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    Yesterday I had very interesting, long and intense conversation with the psychotherapist in case of my MD. In the end of the conversation, she was almost confident that I have hypochondria and she sent me to the psychiatrist to check her presumption.

    Hypochondria is a condition in which a person is excessively and unduly worried about having a serious illness. An old concept, the meaning of hypochondria has repeatedly changed. It has been claimed that this debilitating condition results from an inaccurate perception of the condition of body or mind despite the absence of an actual medical diagnosis.

    In fact, I am still struggling getting final diagnosis, because of the quarantine, despite my symptoms began in late march. Still waiting in the line for dynamic computational posturometry and videonistagmometry tests to be done.

    In the beginning I thought that hypochondria is nonsense, but then I recalled an interesting post where my symptoms are very similar to that story. You can find this post here:

    After 3+ years of this, I might not have Meniere's after all?

    PleaseNoDizzy member finally got relief from Nortriptyline. This medication is used to treat mental/mood problems such as depression. I asked psychotherapist could it be that this member had psychosomatic disorder and she sad most likely.

    So I am wondering has anyone else had a similar experience too?
     
  2. Pilar

    Pilar New Member

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    Hello,
    This is a very interesting piece of information; I'm not a doctor but I can tell you that getting on the floor off balance, vomiting and pressure on my ear was not in my mind and this come from a very healthy and strong human being. In fact, hypochondria is reflected multiple times and with many different reasons. A person who is constantly in pain, or any type of illness that do not exists. If I were you, I will consult with ear doctor because mental health medications can have other types of problems. Just research more and get different opinions for your well being.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Rich

    Rich Member

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    What Pilar said....Usually when the medical community isn’t smart enough to figure out what your physical ailment is they can always fall back on the “hypochondriac “ diagnosis. Sorry, MDs and ENTs aren’t exactly at the top of my list right now... lol
     
  4. twodogs

    twodogs Member

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    There is value in saying I don't know instead of assigning something such as hypochondria. That was rude. Continue your quest with a curious and open mind. Best of luck to you. You deserve much better.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. PleaseNoDizzy

    PleaseNoDizzy Member

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    Oh wow, I wrote that post 6+ years ago in 2014. Well I can give you an update. Definitely wasn't hypochondria, or depression etc. I stabilized for a few years, then in late 2017/early 2018 things got terrible. Vertigo returned big time. I first had shunt surgery, then when that failed I had a laby. Full fledged Meniere's, no question. That surgery was July 2018. Here we are, two years later. Vertigo was finally gone after that surgery. My doc's suspicion that I had a dual diagnosis - MAV and Meniere's rang true. I had vestibular migraine issues months after surgery recovery. I was back to being a functional human, but still had a ways to go. That slowly morphed into traditional migraine (headache, aura etc). I was having debilitating migraines on average 3-4 days per week for the last 6 months. We've tried numerous treatments, and I recently had my first injection of Emgality. It's only been a few weeks but like the laby before, it has been a life changer. Fingers crossed the pain is behind me too.
     
  6. Mindosa

    Mindosa Member

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    I am so sorry to hear that you had such a hard way to go. When I found your post, I silently hoped that still there is a magic pill which can fix all the things, but you kind of shattered my silent dreams :)
    Anyway, I still have several tricks up my sleeve to try and hoping that I will find what causes my MD symptoms and I can fix this and will return to a normal life!

    By the way, getting MD is already like “winning” the lottery, because it is very rare disease, but getting hypochondriac MD I think it should be near impossible. I also checked this forum about hypochondria and had found zero stories. So to me now this psychosomatic theory seems very unlikely.

    Thank you so much for updating your post and wish you good luck!
     
  7. Mindosa

    Mindosa Member

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    Thank you for your advice, but I already visited several ENT's and waiting in the line for otoneurologist consultation with the dynamic computational posturometry and videonistagmometry tests to be done.

    I visited psychotherapist because I feel that my mental health is getting worse and worse because of the everyday physical suffering. I feel that in the mornings I don’t want to wake up, because new day brings new suffering and there is no help to alleviate this madness, still didn’t find..
     
  8. PleaseNoDizzy

    PleaseNoDizzy Member

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    Sorry to shatter dreams. However, quite a few people in this forum have had luck with antivirals and some other treatments. Unfortunately for me, I wasn't one of them, but there's a sizeable crew who have found a "magic pill". In my case, it took surgery to find some peace.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. No thanks

    No thanks New Member

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    Nortriptyline is given in low doses to help prevent migraines. If someone got relief from taking that, the vertigo was probably due to migraines. Nortriptyline just happens to be primarily an antidepressant. The mental state may not be a factor at all unless perhaps stress was also a trigger. A psychotherapist usually thinks along the lines of mental states vs the myriad of other causes of vertigo. I wouldn't jump to psychosomatic when others have been able to determine many other medical causes.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Mindosa

    Mindosa Member

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    Thanks No thanks :) for clearing things out about Nortriptyline once and for all!
     
  11. Kat

    Kat New Member

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    I have many chronic illnesses (physical) as well as a bipolar diagnosis. They are each very real. Unfortunately, doctors see the bipolar and sometimes minimize my physical complaints unless there is hard evidence that they can't refute (like a grand mal seizure, or elevated antibodies for RA). Meniere's is tough. My ENG test wasn't very conclusive, but I have the subjective symptoms for MD. MD can be exacerbated by anxiety, which I am currently having a lot of. But anxiety doesn't cause MD. And anxiety doesn't cause hours upon hours of severe vertigo. Sorry you are going through this, especially in a pandemic.
     
  12. Dora Smith

    Dora Smith New Member

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    Several things. First, there's always medical practitioners who are going to tell you ever sort of thing about what really caused your meniers. If a health care practitioner plain doesn't believe you and tries to send you to mental health care for what you know to be a physical disease, find a new practitioner, fast. You don't want to one day be dying and she doesn't believe you - and it could well happen.

    Do make sure she isn't merely saying that stress may be provoking your menieries, which is possible. Many physical diseases have psychological aggravators and can be helped by counselling; among them, ulcers, and menieres disease.

    The thing is, however, that menieres disease is so highly psychoreactive, you usually know if stress set it off, and it often promptly rewards physically relaxing by going away, and if it doesn't, taking a break may work. That sort of thing may need more time than therapy. If you can't learn how to handle routine stress, and usually menieres is an excellent teacher, short term counselling could work wonders, unless you actually have deeper issues that make you constantly anxious.

    Here's a hint, routine stress fools you because you believe you can handle the situation while your body makes ready to face the saber toothed tiger. There are three aspects to how you respond to stress. Learning how to be alert, ready to react, and not physically tense will probably break the relationship between the situation and menieres. If you need that professionally explained to you, a counselor can help.

    There is a big difference between hypochondria and psychosomatic. Hypochondria is when you made it up or talked or worried yourself into believing you have something you don't have. Psychosomatic is when stress does something to your body that causes health issues. The two most common psychosomatic illnesses are headaches, and the common cold.

    So, if your nurse tells you your menieres is hypochondria and you instantly get an attack, which seems to support her diagnosis - there's what's happening. I've had getting yelled at by the boss set off an attack.
     
  13. California Sun

    California Sun Active Member

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    When the Meniere's started, i went from doctor to doctor trying to get a diagnosis. Since nobody knew what what wrong with me, I was repeatedly told that it was "anxiety", and handed a prescription for Valium. And the fact that I was a young woman at time, my symptoms were just dismissed. I knew something was very wrong and that it wasn't just "all in my head". I have no problem with a doctor telling me "I don't know what is wrong with you" but to be told that my problem is "all in my head" is just plain insulting and dismissive. It took me three years to finally get a diagnosis--of Meniere's. Stress is known to exacerbate Meniere's symptoms--and it is a very real disorder, not an imaginary one.
     
  14. IvanA

    IvanA Member

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    In my case it was the opposite, they seemed to be in a great hurry to diagnose Meniere. In the first emergency admission with only vertigo and without an MRI they already told me that I could have that, after five days I returned to the hospital and the doctor told me that I almost certainly had Meniere. That was in February, in July an ENT confirmed the diagnosis, although it is true that I paid in April to have a quick MRI, but right now I would still be waiting for an appointment to do the MRI and I would not have a diagnosis.

    All in all, I'm a bit like you, I don't like that I was diagnosed with Meniere just because of the symptoms and an MRI. For me that should only be the beginning and not the end of the medical diagnosis. I think it's good that a doctor doesn't know what's wrong with me, but I don't like him telling me "It's Meniere, learn to live like this" without looking at my neck, TMJ, allergies, thyroid, immunological tests, my jaw, etc. There are lots of known causes that can cause Meniere that if treated cure or remit this disease a lot, it seems fatal to me that doctors do not test all those things before saying to you "I'm sorry, I have investigated everything that science allows and not I find nothing to cause your Meniere. "

    I am not going to give up, I have started to investigate and pay for tests on my own. If I fail I will be the same as now, if I succeed I will not only improve but I will go to my doctors and tell them "I was cured and it was not thanks to you."
     
  15. Mindosa

    Mindosa Member

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    I visited the highest rank professor ENT in our country and he said that I probably have Meniere’s and had sent me to the otoneurologist to perform dynamic computational posturometry and videonistagmometry tests to be sure. He also said, that there is no prognosis how my MD will develop, but added, that with the new drugs like Serc, MD is not tend to go very bad and that it will eventually stop after 1 or 2 years.

    After that, I had found this forum and learned from reading it, that MD doesn’t stop after 1 or 2 years. There are plenty who suffers 5, 10, 20 or even more years. So I thought maybe he didn’t want to scary me much and said this quite optimistic prognosis.

    But doing more deeply research in this forum and internet I had found that MD symptoms could cause plenty of reasons and if you will find it, your MD symptoms eventually could stop.

    So that’s for me was very strange, why professor didn’t say that to me?! Instead he just said, that MD is idiopathic and there is nothing we can do about, except reduce salt intake and take Serc or Cinnarizin.

    So now I am wondering, whether he doesn’t know that is possible to find the cause for MD and after solving it is possible to alleviate or even to stop MD symptoms?! But for me, lack of knowledge sound very strange for the highest rank professor!

    Or maybe protocol don’t allow for doctors to help finding the cause, because in the protocol is written – idiopathic?!? Any thoughts?

    So in September I have an appointment with otoneurologist who made the dissertation in MD! Very interesting what will be her opinion and what she will say about seeking causes?
     
  16. Joney

    Joney Active Member

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    I had a somewhat similar experience in that the doctor was quick to diagnose me with Meniere’s without an MRI, only a quick examination and a hearing test. He to dismissed me saying take these meds and learn to live with it. Seriously, who does that!!! The fact we have to investigate and see multiple doctors before finding an answer, is ridiculous. As you said, he could have offered several options, a dentist, an allergy doctor, someone to test for viruses, etc. It wasn’t until I found this wonderful place that I found some hope. I did see several different doctors, but it was through my own investigation that I found a functional medicine neurologist. He was the first doctor to offer a diagnosis that wasn’t Meniere’s, but an issue that has caused my eyes, ears and brain to not communicate effectively together. I have had much success with this, however in times of severe stress (pandemic/lockdown) my symptoms seem to come back. I’m working to come back to more normal and less symptoms.
     
  17. California Sun

    California Sun Active Member

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    I have a friend who tells me that her Meniere's symptoms stopped after a couple of years--but at that point she had lost 90-95% of her hearing. She was told that was a rare occurrence. Last Dr. I visited told me that while it was possible that my symptoms could just stop--but I also would have lost my hearing at that point. He also mentioned that it was a rare occurrence for that to happen.
     

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