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Most Patients With Acute Low-Tone Hearing Loss Have Recovery

Reports of recurrence relatively common, but progression to Meniere disease rare

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, April 5, 2023 (HealthDay News) — For patients with acute low-tone hearing loss (ALHL) without vertigo, partial or complete recovery is reported frequently, although recurrence seems to be relatively common, according to a review published online March 7 in The Laryngoscope.

Ryan J. Huang, M.D., from the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina, and colleagues conducted a scoping review of the literature to examine recovery from hearing loss, recurrence and/or fluctuation of hearing loss, and progression to Meniere disease among patients presenting with ALHL without vertigo. Data were included from 41 studies.

The researchers identified extensive heterogeneity between studies with respect to defining ALHL, treatment methods, and follow-up time. Partial or complete recovery of hearing was reported in the majority of patients (>50 percent) in most of the cohorts (39 of 40), although reports of recurrence were relatively common. Progression to Meniere disease occurred rarely. In six of eight studies, shorter time from onset of symptoms to treatment predicted better hearing outcomes.

“While the literature suggests that the majority of patients with ALHL appear to experience hearing improvement, recurrence and/or fluctuation are common,” the authors write. “Additional studies and randomized controlled trials utilizing standardized criteria for diagnosis, study inclusion, and hearing outcome are needed to determine the natural history and ideal treatment for ALHL.”

One author disclosed serving on the surgical advisory boards for Med-El and Advanced Bionics.

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