JOURNAL ARTICLE

Electrocochleography and gentamicin therapy for Ménière's disease: a preliminary report

J Adamonis, S G Stanton, M Z Cashman, K Mattan, J M Nedzelski, J M Chen
American Journal of Otology 2000, 21 (4): 534-42
10912700

OBJECTIVE: It is widely held that an enlarged summating potential (SP) relative to the eighth nerve action potential (AP) is a reflection of endolymphatic hydrops. Aminoglycosides are an accepted treatment for incapacitating Ménière's disease and are known to affect both sensory and secretory cells of the inner ear. The intent of this study was to determine whether this effect on secretory cells could be objectively confirmed by virtue of changes in the electrocochleogram (ECoG) of patients receiving gentamicin therapy for Ménière's disease.

STUDY DESIGN: This was a prospective longitudinal study of repeated ECoG measures in three groups of subjects. Ménière's patients undergoing gentamicin treatment were compared with two control groups: individuals with stable Ménière's disease and normal-hearing control subjects.

SETTING: The study was conducted at a tertiary referral center.

PATIENTS: The sample included 21 normal-hearing subjects, 15 patients with stable unilateral Ménière's disease, and 12 with disabling unilateral Ménière's disease.

INTERVENTIONS: For patients with disabling Ménière's disease, gentamicin was administered transtympanically. Audiograms, impedance tests, and ECoG were performed twice for all subjects.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The SP and AP amplitudes, AP latency, and SP/AP ratio of the EcoG were measured.

RESULTS: A statistically significant reduction in the SP/AP ratio was observed after gentamicin administration (analysis of variance interaction effect: F2 = 5.64; p = 0.0065).

CONCLUSIONS: The significant reduction in the SP/AP ratio in the gentamicin-treated Ménière's group supports the hypothesis that gentamicin improves the electrophysiologic function of the cochlea, possibly by reducing the severity of the associated endolymphatic hydrops.

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