Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Hearing Loss Treatment
Sudden sensorineural hearing loss is an ENT emergency.
A patient with sudden sensorineural hearing will experience sudden drop in hearing over 72 hours in 1 ear. Some patients may experience a blocked ear sensation or sudden onset tinnitus as part of their hearing loss. Some cases may be accompanied by vertigo.
This condition can occur due to various reasons
- Idiopathic (no known cause)
- Viral infections
- Ear tumours
- Trauma to the head
- Autoimmune diseases
- Blood circulation or vascular issues
- Neurological disorders (like multiple sclerosis)
- Meniere’s disease
Treatment is time sensitive and the earlier treatment is started the better the outcome. Hence, seeking treatment early with ENT doctor is crucial. A formal audiogram will be performed and depending on its result, further investigations like an MRI scan of the Brain or blood tests may be ordered.
Mainstay of treatment once hearing loss is confirmed is oral steroids. For patients who are unable to tolerate oral steroids, steroid injections into the middle ear known as Intratympanic Steroid injections are given.
After one course of treatment with steroids, our ENT doctor will evaluate your improvement and suggest the next step of management.
In some cases where hearing does not return despite medication, you may hearing aids or cochlear implants to help your ears and brain hear again.