Thousands of people are diagnosed with hearing loss every year, but while the general diagnosis might be the same, there are many different reasons why people experience a loss of hearing.  Essentially there are two basic reasons for hearing loss:  middle ear issues (Conductive hearing loss) and inner ear issues (Sensorineural hearing loss).

Let’s take a look at what might cause—and how we might Audiologie Centre-Ouest treat—sensorineural hearing loss.

TRAUMA

There are two types of trauma that can result in sensorineural hearing loss.  First of all, this condition can be a result of acoustic trauma.  Acoustic trauma is the name given to trauma caused by exposure to extremely loud noise.  This is a condition common to people who work in construction as well as arena musical performers (ie rock bands, etc).  Acoustic trauma-related sensorineural hearing loss seems to respond to medical therapy as well as corticosteroids in an attempt to reduce cochlea hair cell swelling and overall inflammation.

Secondly, sensorineural hearing loss can be caused by head trauma, which also includes dramatic changes in air pressure, resulting in rupture or leakage of the inner ear fluid compartment. As such, this type of trauma can be associated with contact sports as well as air travel professionals.  Typically, this type of trauma-related sensorineural hearing loss is treated with emergency surgery.

DISEASE

Various types of infections and disease can cause sensorineural hearing loss.  Sometimes hearing loss can be viral in origin; other times it can be the result of one of many autoimmune diseases.  Again, depending upon the nature of the infection or disease, this type of sensorineural hearing loss can be treated with medications like corticosteroids and other drug therapies.

Sometimes, sensorineural hearing loss can result from other diseases or conditions, like multiple sclerosis.  Typically, treatments for the associated primary condition will alleviate symptoms of sensorineural hearing loss.

MENIERE’S DISEASE

In some cases, sensorineural hearing loss can be the result of a condition known as Meniere’s Disease.  This is a disorder of the inner ear characterized by episodes of vertigo, tinnitus (ringing in the ear), a sensation of fullness or pressure within the ear, and hearing loss that fluctuates.  Meniere’s Disease can be treated with dietary changes and diuretics, as well as the usual corticosteroids.