How Covid-19 can lead to permanent hearing loss?

Team Udayavani, Oct 18, 2020, 12:15 PM IST

Researchers claim that Covid-19 may cause sudden permanent hearing loss in some patients. A recent study published in BMJ Case Reports, conducted by researchers from University College London and the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital in the UK, says Covid-19 may affect the hearing of some patients.

The research, published in the journal BMJ Case Reports, describes the case of a 45-year-old man with asthma who was referred to the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital in the UK after suddenly experiencing hearing loss in one ear while being treated for Covid-19

According to WebMD, The patient was admitted to the hospital on the tenth day of developing Covid-19 symptoms and subsequently required intubation and admission into the ICU. The patient was intubated for 30 days and his admission was complicated further owing to reasons such as pulmonary hypertension and anaemia.

After receiving remdesivir, plasma therapy and intravenous steroids the patient’s condition improved, however, a week after extubation and transfer out of the ICU, he reported left-sided tinnitus and sudden hearing loss.

The study claims that he had not lost his hearing or had ear problems before, and apart from asthma, he was otherwise fit and well. On examining his ear canals, they found that there were no blockages or inflammation, but a hearing test showed that he had substantially lost his hearing in the left ear. He was treated with steroid tablets and injections after which his hearing partially recovered

It is said that the virus also generates an inflammatory response and an increase in the chemicals that have been linked to hearing loss. Scientists claim that the doctors must ask patients in intensive care about hearing loss and refer them for urgent treatment.

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