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Sudden sensorineural hearing loss: long-term follow-up results

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Psifidis Anestis MD, Prof. of Otorhinolaryngology, Thessaloniki, Greece

OBJECTIVE: This study describes the long-term outcome of patients suffering from sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSHL) after an initial combined therapy of steroids with vasodilators.

STUDY DESIGN AND SETTING: Eighty cases were retrospectively reviewed to evaluate the long-term audiometric data and to statistically assess the value of specific clinical parameters. The persistent long-term otoneurologic manifestations associated with SSHL were also reported.

RESULTS: In the long-term period, hearing level remained stable 2 months after the onset of SSHL. Patients complained of persistent tinnitus (36%), fluctuant hearing loss (8.7%), dizziness (8.7%), and classical Ménière's triad in 2.5% of cases. Profound and total SSHL associated with vertigo are poor prognostic indicators.

CONCLUSIONS: In terms of cost-effectiveness, a steroid-vasodilator therapy for SSHL for >2 months is not recommended because no additional effect was evidenced. Persistent otoneurologic manifestations, mainly tinnitus or dizziness are relatively common, particularly in patients with severe to total SSHL. EBM rating: C-4.

References

Psifidis AD, Psillas GK, Daniilidis JCh. Sudden sensorineural hearing loss: long-term follow-up results. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg.2006 May;134(5):809-15. Comment in: Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2006 Dec;135(6):995-6. 


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