Dizzy 3.gif  That is the song by Tommy Roe from April 6, 1969 . And that pharase describes how I feel today… literally! You see, I have an inner ear problem called Ménière’s Disease. It is the result of fluid pressure that builds up in the inner ear that causes what people used to call vertigo.  When an attack hits, it can put you in your bed.

  The best way I can describe it follows: 1st, There is always a loud ringing in my ears called tinnitis. I’ve had it for at least 10 to 15 years and it is always there (Thus it is very hard for me to understand people talking in crowded places).  2nd, My head feels full (I say “I can feel my brain.”  I know that’s wierd, but it’s a good description.).  3rd, There is a constant feeling of being disoriented which can range from feeling a) light-headed to b) dizzy to c) sick.  I can function well with “a.”  I can do okay with “b.”  But when “c” hits I’m either in the bed or possibly the hospital.

  When my first attack hit a few years ago I thought I was dying.  I felt like I had been in the center of a kids playground merry-go-round for ten minutes and was trying to walk.  I couldn’t talk properly.  I couldn’t think straight.  I was not in control.  And nothing could make the dizziness go away.  I spent the next month on valium to depress my motor functions so I wouldn’t be throwing up constantly from the effects of the disease.  I used a cane to walk, couldn’t drive, and had to preach sitting down (One guy warned if I brought out the Kool Aid he was leaving!).

Dizzy 2.jpgThe cure?  I went to a Dr. Pappas in Birmingham, AL. who surgically put three injections of steroids directly on my inner ear.  Six weeks later all the symptoms were gone… except for the ringing.  Now I have bouts ever so often.  I’ve noticed when the barometric pressure changes dramatically (Like today with the rain), it gets much worse for a little while.  Thus I keep Antivert {Meclizine, 25 mg} close at hand (A pharmicist suggested that benadryl works just as well).

Lessons?  For me here are a few: 1) You don’t ever know when your life will change because of factors beyond your control.  2) Enjoy each day God grants you to it’s fullest.  3) Stay away from caffine and salt… exercise and lose weight.

The pictures included on this post are there for a reason.  If you look at them long enough, you start to feel just a little of what a person with Meniere’s feels like all the time.  Disoriented… confused… and maybe a little sick.  If you know someone who has symptoms similar to what I’ve described, suggest that they read what is contained on the link at the beginning of this post.

This has been a Public Service Announcement…