Skip to ContentSkip to Navigation
About usNews and EventsNews articles

Menière's disease; pathogenesis of vestibular dysfunction and new diagnostic tests

16 February 2011

PhD ceremony: Ms. C.M. Kingma, 14.45 uur, Academiegebouw, Broerstraat 5, Groningen

Title: Menière's disease; pathogenesis of vestibular dysfunction and new diagnostic tests

Promotor(s): prof. H.P. Wit, prof. B.F.A.M. van der Laan

Faculty: Medical Sciences


Menière’s disease (MD) is characterised by three symptoms: fluctuating hearing loss, episodic vertigo, and tinnitus. Although vertigo is the most severe complaint in MD, it has not been studied widely. The focus of this research was on the function of the vestibular system as an explanation for vertigo in MD.

An animal model was used to investigate the function of the vestibular system. The creation of an acute endolymphatic hydrops in the vestibular system did not cause the symptoms of MD. In case the hydrops resulted in a rupture of Reissner’s membrane, it caused an immediate and complete suppression of the function of the vestibular system. The influence of potassium ions leaking through the ruptured membrane on the sensory and neural structures in the vestibular system is the most likely explanation for the development of vertigo. It is concluded that the ‘membrane rupture hypothesis’ of MD is confirmed by the animal model for rupture and recovery of Reissner’s membrane that mimicked an episode of MD.



Last modified:15 September 2017 3.40 p.m.

More news

  • 23 April 2019

    From paperclip to patent

    How is it possible that an albatross doesn’t crash and die when it lands? And how come its large wings don’t break due to air resistance? That is what you would expect, according to the laws of aerodynamics. However, Professor Eize Stamhuis has discovered...

  • 16 April 2019

    A thorough characterization of structural variants in human genomes

    Human genomes vary quite a bit from individual to individual. These differences include single nucleotide changes, or “spelling mistakes” in the DNA sequence, but even more variation comes from structural variants, which include additions, deletions...

  • 02 April 2019

    ‘Sense of loss drives voting behaviour’

    ‘Everybody here loves that academia has returned to Friesland. We teach, carry out research and think along about solutions to problems that are relevant for Friesland,’ says Caspar van den Berg, Professor of Global and Local Governance at the UG Campus...