Patients with profound sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL) have a poor prognosis regardless of the type of treatment they receive. However, there is evidence that a proportion of patients with profound hearing loss may exhibit variable degrees of recovery, and this has yet to be specifically investigated. Here, we report a comparison of levels of hearing improvement in patients stratified according to their level of hearing threshold before treatment. We divided patients with severe to profound SSNHL into three groups: patients with an initial hearing threshold of 80–89 dB (n = 18), 90–99 dB (n = 16), and ≥100 dB (n = 34). We compared improvements in hearing threshold at different frequencies and recovery rates between the three groups. No significant differences were observed in hearing threshold improvements at different frequencies in the three groups after treatment. However, in the group with an initial hearing threshold of ≥100 dB, significantly less complete and partial recoveries occurred compared to those in the 80–89 or 90–99 dB groups. Our results suggest that initial hearing threshold in excess of 100 dB alters the likelihood of satisfactory recovery in patients with severe to profound SSNHL.
Hearing loss Sudden
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
Conflict of interest
Whitaker S (1980) Idiopathic sudden hearing loss. Am J Otol 15:244–246Google Scholar
Cvorovic L, Deric D, Probst R, Hegemann S (2008) Prognostic model for predicting hearing recovery in idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Otol Neurotol 29:464–469PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mattox DE, Lyles CA (1989) Idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Am J Otol 10:242–247PubMedGoogle Scholar
Moskowitz D, Lee KJ, Smith HW (1984) Steroid use in idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Laryngoscope 94:664–666PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Byl FM Jr (1984) Sudden hearing loss: eight years’ experience and suggested prognostic table. Laryngoscope 94:647–661PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Siegel LG (1975) The treatment of idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Otolaryngol Clin North Am 8:467–473PubMedGoogle Scholar
Wilson WR, Byl FM, Laird N (1980) The efficacy of steroids in the treatment of idiopathic sudden hearing loss: a double-blind clinical study. Arch Otolaryngol 106:772–776PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Battaglia A, Burchette R, Cueva R (2008) Combination therapy (intratympanic dexamethasone + high-dose prednisone taper) for the treatment of idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Otol Neurotol 29:453–460PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hong SM, Park CH, Lee JH (2009) Hearing outcomes of daily intratympanic dexamethasone alone as a primary treatment modality for ISSHL. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 141:579–583PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Haynes DS, O’Malley M, Cohen S, Watford K, Labadie RF (2007) Intratympanic dexamethasone for sudden sensorineural hearing loss after failure of systemic therapy. Laryngoscope 117:3–15PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Laird N, Wilson WR (1983) Predicting recovery from idiopathic sudden hearing loss. Am J Otol 4:161–164CrossRefGoogle Scholar