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Meniere's Disease

- Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Dr. Stinson: Today is June 22, 2011, we have a very long time patient of mine, this is Mr. Skip Miller. He’s got a very interesting story, and I’m going to turn it over to you, Skip.

Skip: Hi, as Dr. Stinson said, my name is Skip Miller. I’ve been a patient of Atlas Chiropractic Procedures since September of 2002. I’ve contracted what’s called Meniere’s, which as doctors tell you, they don’t know what causes it, they don’t know how to cure it, they just know it’s progressive. The progressive part is the inner ear of the affected ear, or ears, is basically killed or you become deaf. I got introduced to the Atlas Chiropractic Procedures through my second brother who also has Meniere’s. He’s a research patient of the University of California - Davis Campus, and his research doctor there sent him to an Atlas Chiropractor who’s in Auburn, California. And I first went to the Atlas Chiropractic Program through Dr. Greg Wiles who was located in Fircrest, Washington. I actually interviewed him for about an hour, along with my oldest son sitting there. And Dr. Wiles, after listening to me and I was talking to him, asked, are you looking for a cure? And I said, no, I understand there’s no cure. And he said, well, that’s true, and I would’ve thrown you out of my office if you’d said that that’s what you wanted. His mother had Meniere’s, he was very familiar with it. And pretty much what he told me was that they can’t cure it, but they can help to alleviate the symptoms of Meniere’s.

Dr. Stinson: And Skip could you give us a…what do you feel when you have an attack?

Skip: The attack on Meniere’s, as I said, it deals with the inner ear or messes the inner ear up, and that’s where your center of balance and equilibrium is located. And when I get attacks, and majority of people with Meniere’s, the basic symptoms are all the same, you get pretty much unannounced bouts of vertigo, or severe dizziness. If you get the major bouts of vertigo, like I did initially, you’ll also have nausea and vomiting, and it takes for, generally, like first time I had mine it was like 2 in the morning, when I was at work, and they weren’t able to steady me down using medications until about 8 in the morning. So during that whole time, you’re basically spinning in your head, it’s one of the few times that doctors are right when they say, it’s all in your head. But your balance, your equilibrium are important to you for walking and standing up or bending over, standing back up from bending over, and once that’s compromised then you’re in a real hurting situation. My profession was law enforcement, in corrections, and when I wound up having to be medically retired in September 2002, at my request I told them I didn’t want to place any of my staff or other officers in harm’s way by worrying more about me than some out of control prisoner. And the symptoms, you can feel it a lot of times coming on, I’ve had people ask me how I’m able to drive with it, and I said because I can actually feel if I’m going to…like I’m getting dizzy or anything and I’d pull-over the side of the road and thankfully, only 1 time since I initially got discovered was this stuff that I’ve actually had to do that. I was in parking lots, 2 different times, and just called my wife, she said, okay you need to get someone to come with you so one can drive the car back and I can ride with someone. But I knew when it was coming and as I said, the basic symptoms for everybody with Meniere’s is pretty much the same and then other people will get other kinds of symptoms, and that is what really throws my curve on how to figure out what Meniere’s actually is. Because they don’t know what causes it. To be diagnosed with Meniere’s, you have to be seen by an ENT specialist and a neurologist because some people believe it’s strictly the inner ear system, others think it’s something neurological. There is a school of thought that Meniere’s is actually part of the MS field.

Dr. Stinson: So when you’re having these attacks, how often would you have these attacks?

Skip: Well initially, and this is prior to seeing chiropractic services, I was getting them everyday, not real severe like the first time, but I would get them maybe 4 or 5, 10 seconds I could feel myself getting dizzy. And it lasted probably about 2 and a half years that was kind of a here we go, here we go, here we go, all those things. When we decided to move from Washington State to Kentucky, one of the reasons was because for me, personally, low pressure definitely affects me. I can feel the pressure changes and the best way to describe it is you get an attack and you basically just want to be in bed. It’s about the same if you’ve ever seen somebody with a grand mal seizure, where they just want to sleep because the body has expended so much energy, the body just has to rest. That’s pretty much what I do, and my brother, David told me he does the same. Starting out with Dr. Wiles and having my neck adjusted on the atlas bone, the symptoms were definitely lessened up, I had less bouts of minor type dizziness. When we moved out here, I first saw Dr. James Miller, same, and then I was checking on the Atlas Chiropractor website and this guy here shows up out of the blue all of a sudden and I said, where did he come from? So I made contact with his office and got an appointment and came in.

Dr. Stinson: So when your atlas is in adjustment, symptomatically how did you feel?

Skip: I feel okay, where I can actually do things. I was just in Virginia assisting my sister and my mother, and had a maybe 30-45 second vertigo attack. And I talked, told the good doctor here when I came in, my first things coming back from Virginia was to get an appointment with him to get adjusted because I knew when that had happened, my neck had to be out of location because it generally shows that it is and that’s what he found today. And I would strongly recommend, which I do to people that I meet that tell me they know of Meniere’s or they have a family member, to get to an atlas chiropractor. And again, like I tell them that they won’t cure it and they can’t tell you what causes it but they can definitely help to alleviate some of the symptoms, and that’s…you can live with that more than what you have otherwise. So I would say that this gentleman here, being the only atlas chiropractor in Lexington is a good bet and a safe bet for somebody to come and see him.

Dr. Stinson: Well, Skip I appreciate you being on our video.