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MESSAGES TO
Jennifer from Singapore asked a question

Is it possible to recover from hearing loss that happened many years ago?

Hi, my mum suffered sudden hearing loss in her left ear almost 8 years ago. May I know whether there is any chance of recovery at all (at least a little)? She feels uncomfortable wearing a hearing aid as she is not used to it. She also complains of a ringing sound that's very disturbing at certain times of the day (not every day). This results in her feeling very paranoid and frustrated easily. My mom is still young, and I don't want this issue to affect her for the rest of her life. Hence, it would be great if you could suggest some options to help her cope with her hearing loss and ringing in the ear. 

DOCTOR’S ANSWER (3)
Dr Lynne Lim
Ear, Nose & Throat
Singapore
(1 Ratings)
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Dr Lynne Lim
Ear, Nose & Throat
Singapore
(1 Ratings)
Answered on Sun Aug 05 2018 12:28:59 GMT+0000 (UTC)

Dear Jennifer,

It is understandably very tiring for your mom, not to hear well and also to be stressed by tinnitus. Hearing loss and tinnitus makes it hard for someone to participate in social situations and conversations, and is very tiring and reduces one's mental cognition, memory and safety even.

Your mom may misunderstand what is said and feel insecure or embarrassed by mistaking things said, and thus present as paranoid, grouchy or slow in mentation.

If it was a sudden hearing loss that has been reviewed by multiple ENTs and no cause has been found by all of them and tumor excluded, the most likely cause would be viral infection, poor blood supply to the inner ear or an autoimmune issue previously.

With a hearing loss from 8 years ago, there may not be improvement now, unless it...

0 73 views 0 Doctors agree Sun Aug 05 2018 12:28:59 GMT+0000 (UTC)
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Dr Gan Eng Cern
Ear, Nose & Throat
Singapore
(6 Ratings)
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Dr Gan Eng Cern
Ear, Nose & Throat
Singapore
(6 Ratings)
Answered on Wed May 02 2018 07:20:55 GMT+0000 (UTC)

Dear Jennifer,

Thank you for your question. If you have been told that your mother suffered from "Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss", it refers to a sudden onset of hearing loss that is due to damage to the hearing organ (cochlea) or hearing nerve (cochlear nerve).

This is a condition in which most of the time, the cause is unknown. However, in some cases, this may be due to thyroid hormone imbalance, inflammation or infection of the inner ear or a growth (tumour) on the hearing nerve close to the brain. It is likely that your mother would have undergone some blood tests and even an MRI to exclude these conditions.

Sudden sensorineural hearing loss may be reversible - usually within the first 1 month of the onset of the symptom. The best time to seek treatment is within 3 days...

0 205 views 0 Doctors agree Wed May 02 2018 07:20:55 GMT+0000 (UTC)
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Dr Annabelle Leong
Ear, Nose & Throat
Singapore
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Dr Annabelle Leong
Ear, Nose & Throat
Singapore
Answered on Sun Aug 12 2018 12:41:42 GMT+0000 (UTC)

Dear Jennifer,

I am sorry to hear that your mum has been so disturbed by the hearing loss and ringing noise in her ear for the past 8 years!

Sudden hearing loss is regarded as an "ENT emergency" i.e. if you lose your hearing suddenly, you should seek medical help as soon as you can so that appropriate medications may be started as early as possible to maximise the chances of hearing recovery.

Frankly speaking, the best chances for recovery of her hearing would have been within the first 72 hours, with many patients noticing that the peak time of recovery is within the first 2 weeks after having lost their hearing suddenly. Many ENT doctors will treat with medications up to the 6 week window: After this window, the chances of recovery begin to fall drastically. ...

0 16 views 0 Doctors agree Sun Aug 12 2018 12:41:42 GMT+0000 (UTC)
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