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April 3, 1937


Author Affiliations

Assistant in Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital; Research Assistant in Neurology, Boston City Hospital; Assistant in Neurology, Tufts Medical School BOSTON

From the Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Neurological Unit, Boston City Hospital.

JAMA. 1937;108(14):1158-1160. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.02780140014004

In January 1861 at the Imperial Academy of Medicine of France, Prosper Ménière delivered a paper entitled "Memoir Concerning Lesions of the Internal Ear Giving Rise to the Symptoms of Cerebral Apoplectiform Congestion." This paper was important for two reasons: it was the first time that the syndrome of deafness and tinnitus accompanied by attacks of vertigo, vomiting and nystagmus had been related to the inner ear, and, secondly, it contained the description of an autopsy as a result of which generations of medical students have been taught that these attacks were due to hemorrhage into the labyrinth. Today it is realized that the pathologic anatomy is unknown. It has been impossible to localize the lesion in any one part of the auditory tract. Therefore many forms of therapy have been tried: lumbar puncture, quinine, mastoidectomy, labyrinthectomy and, finally, section of the vestibular portion of the eighth nerve. Of these

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