Treatment of vestibular disorders with weak asymmetric base-in prisms: An hypothesis with a focus on Ménière’s disease
BACKGROUND : Regular treatments of Ménière’s disease (MD) vary largely, and no single satisfactory treatment exists. A complementary treatment popular among Dutch and Belgian patients involves eyeglasses with weak asymmetric base-in prisms, with a perceived high success rate. An explanatory mechanism is, however, lacking. OBJECTIVE : To speculate on a working mechanism explaining an effectiveness of weak asymmetric base-in prims in MD, based on available knowledge. METHODS : After describing the way these prisms are prescribed using a walking test and its effect reported on, we give an explanation of its underlying mechanism, based on the literature. RESULTS : The presumed effect can be explained by considering the typical star-like walking pattern in MD, induced by a drifting after-image comparable to the oculogyral illusion. Weak asymmetric base-in prisms can furthermore eliminate the conflict between a net vestibular angular velocity bias in the efferent signal controlling the VOR, and a net re-afferent ocular signal. CONCLUSIONS : The positive findings with these glasses reported on, the fact that the treatment itself is simple, low-cost, and socially acceptable, and the fact that an explanation is at hand, speak in favour of elaborating further on this treatment.
ELSS - Earth, Life and Social Sciences
To reference this document use:
Human & Operational Modelling
Defence, Safety and Security
PCS - Perceptual and Cognitive Systems
Journal of Vestibular Research, 27 (27), 251-263