- Japan Society for Equilibrium Research
- Equilibrium Research (ISSN:03855716)
- vol.50, no.7, pp.1-10, 1991
During the past 14 years from 1975 to 1989, two-nation-wide surveys of Meniere's disease have been carried out by the Vestibular Disorders Research Comittee of Japan, supported by the Ministry of Health and Welfare of Japan. However, an epidemiological case-control-study including normal subjects has not yet been performed by this committee.<BR>In this third survey, therefore, 148 patients with definite Meniere's disease, 138 with non-Meniere vertigo, 113 with rhinolaryngological disorders, and 165 normal control subjects were collected by the 16 mem-bers of the Research Committee from June 1990 to November 1990. The controls were selected to match as closely as possible the sex, age and location of the Meniere's disease patients.<BR>The characteristic epidemiological features of Meniere's disease in Japan were :<BR>1) Sex-ratio : 63 males to 85 female.<BR>2) Age-distribution : Peak at 40-49 years for males and 30-39 years for females.<BR>3) Season and Time of Onset : Often initial vertigo attacks occurred in the afternoon or in the morning.<BR>4) Occupational Distribution : There was a higher incidence of Meniere's disease among technicians or white-collar workers than among farmers, laborers engaged in blue-collar work, as in the 1st and 2nd surveys. However, the number of house-wives was lower in this 3rd survey.<BR>5) Personal characteristics : In patients with Meniere's disease, precisionism and neurosis were more frequently observed than in non-Meniere's vertigo.<BR>6) Preceding Events : Mental and physical fatigue before vertigo attacks was frequent in Meniere's disease patients.<BR>These epidemiological features reconfirm that the occurrence of vertigo attacks in Meniere's disease is influenced much more by individual factors than by environmental factors, as was found in the 1st and 2nd Nation-wide surveys. However, a marked difference in sex ratio with female preponderance was found in the 3rd survey.<BR>The incidence of bilateral Meniere's disease was 16.2% (24/148), higher than in the 1st and 2nd surveys.