Medical Conditions that Cause Hearing Loss

Hearing loss can be linked to many different things. It is common to experience gradual hearing loss as you age. However, it is possible that your hearing loss may not be just from old age or a hearing condition, but another medical condition you are unaware of. Here are some medical conditions that can cause hearing loss:

  • Blood
    • Poor blood flow to the ear can affect your inner ear. Cases where people suffer from hypercoaguability and polcythemia can suffer from blood related hearing loss.
    • People who have high blood pressure may also experience hearing loss. Patients with hypolipoproteinemia have been known to experience hearing loss.
    • Those who suffer from Sickle Cell Disease can experience sensorineural hearing loss. Deafness may be sudden, but in some cases it has returned.
    • AID’s patients have been known to have hearing loss and nerve damage due to their disease. AID’s is known to cause tumors in the head and neck which often have an effect on a person’s hearing.
  • Infections
    • STDs- STD’s such syphilis can cause hearing loss. Syphilis is contracted through sexual contact or through birth. People with this STD may have it for a while before they start to see any signs. Syphilis can cause hearing loss, if caught early this can be cured. If a person waits too long, the damage will continue to get worse until they are completely deaf. Another STD that can affect hearing is herpes-notably cytomegalo virus.
    • Lyme Disease – Due to the bite of a tick, Lyme disease can cause hearing issues. Hearing loss and tinnitus are side effects of Lyme disease.
    • The Flu- Due to your throat and lungs being connected by a tube any congestion in your respiratory tract will also your ear canal.
  • Diabetes
    • Though studies vary, roughly 40 percent of people who have diabetes suffer from some kind of hearing loss-usually in both ears with high frequencies being the most affected.
  • Dementia
    • It is currently unknown why there is a link between dementia and hearing loss, but a person who suffers from severe hearing loss is 4 times as likely to end up with dementia.
  • Tinnitus/dizziness
    • Tinnitus commonly produces a ringing. Both Tinnitus and dizziness are linked to hearing loss, but can in most cases be effectively treated.
  • Meningitis
    • Hearing loss is extremely common from bacterial or fungal meningitis. Meningitis attacks the covering of the brain and the spinal cord. Once in recovery, hearing evaluations should be preformed.
  • Tuberculosis
    • Hearing loss is a side effect of Tuberculosis. It is believed that hearing loss may stem from the medication (streptomycin) used to treat this infection.
  • Thyroid
    • An underactive thyroid or hypothyroidism is a common reason for hearing loss. Roughly one half of people how have an underactive thyroid suffer from hearing loss.
  • Arthritis
    • Both Arthritis and vasculitis are commonly associated with hearing loss. Conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus erythematosus, and others fall into this category.
  • Kidney Disease
    • The inner ear and kidney are very similar; both are irritated by the same medications. Since they are so similar, if something is bothering the Kidneys, it may also bother the ear causing hearing loss.
  • Cancer
    • Cancer in the ear or head area can cause hearing loss.
    • Chemotherapy and radiation can cause hearing loss. It is suggested that a person receiving these treatments receives a hearing evaluation before, during, and after treatment.
  • Hereditary
    • If hearing loss runs in your family, chances are you will experience hearing looss problems too.
  • Childhood Illnesses
    • Mumps- This childhood illness is a common cause of one-sided total deafness. Often people are unaware of the damage that has been done to their hearing until later on in life.
    • Scarlet Fever- Another childhood illness that can affect ones hearing. It is possible that scarlet fever can damage the eardrum and middle ear bones.
    • Chicken Pox- Commonly seen in children, chicken pox can cause hearing loss in unborn children if their mothers contract it while pregnant.