In the study of labyrinthine deafness with the tuning forks, I have been confronted several times with the following observations: The patient gives a history of a sudden attack of nausea and vomiting accompanied by intense vertigo and total deafness in one ear. Otitis media and mastoiditis may or may not be present. Spontaneous nystagmus and past pointing may be present if the patient is seen soon enough after the onset of the attack.
Objectively there is a total loss of air conduction in one ear, as shown by all tests. When tested for bone conduction by the Weber test, the patient frequently refers the sound to the unaffected ear. When the tuning fork is placed over the affected mastoid, however, the patient frequently claims that he perceives the sound with the affected ear. This fact would rule out a dead ear. It is well known that it is difficult
WIEDER HS. A NEW TEST FOR BORROWED BONE CONDUCTION. Arch Otolaryngol. 1931;13(6):822–823. doi:10.1001/archotol.1931.04230040038002