By M. Jennifer Derebery, MD
Meniere’s Disease is one of the House Institute Foundation’s (HIF) primary areas of research. Its symptoms include episodic bouts of severe vertigo, unstable sensorineural hearing loss, ear fullness, and tinnitus. Although first described in 1861, the cause of Meniere’s Disease is still unknown. There are many theories, including viral, allergic, metabolic, structural, and autoimmune etiologies. HIF has had several publications regarding both possible treatments and etiology.
Montelukast, a medication used to treat allergic rhinitis and asthma, has been shown to have a protective effect against the development of Meniere’s Disease in allergically sensitized animals. Funding provided by HIF and CURES Within Reach will be used to start a double-blinded, placebo-controlled research trial within the next few months involving treatment with montelukast. Allergy patients diagnosed with Meniere’s Disease who are currently taking allergy immunotherapy (shots) will be eligible. HIF will reach out to patients with those diagnoses who may be interested in volunteering to participate in the trial.
If you are diagnosed with Meniere’s Disease, watch for a notification from HIF, and consider joining this study. And, whether or not you have Meniere’s Disease, please consider donating to HIF to support our ongoing research on Meniere’s Disease and other treatments of hearing loss.