Icons related to Covid 19

Long Covid syndrome: is there a risk of sudden hearing loss?

Corona can also damage hearing

Covid-19 is a dise­a­se with many mani­fes­ta­ti­ons. In addi­ti­on to seve­re cour­ses with per­ma­nent dama­ge to the organs, mild cour­ses can also have serious con­se­quen­ces. Accor­ding to a recent stu­dy, hea­ring loss is now included.

Sars-CoV‑2 infec­tion can cau­se hea­ring loss. This is the result of a stu­dy by rese­ar­chers from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Man­ches­ter. As ear­ly as 2020, the­re were reports from pati­ents who had deve­lo­ped ear dis­or­ders after con­trac­ting Covid-19. The audio­lo­gists Ibra­him Almufar­rij and Kevin Mun­ro the­r­e­fo­re went in search of Covid 19 cases in which hea­ring dis­or­ders, tin­ni­tus or diz­ziness cau­sed by the inner ear also occur­red. They brought tog­e­ther a total of 56 dif­fe­rent recor­dings, which they then sys­te­ma­ti­cal­ly analyzed.

“I’ve recei­ved count­less emails over the last few months from peo­p­le report­ing chan­ges in their hea­ring or tin­ni­tus after Covid-19,” says Mun­ro. The­re is the­r­e­fo­re an urgent need to inves­ti­ga­te the long-term effects of Covid-19 on the audi­to­ry sys­tem in more detail. It is alre­a­dy known that some pati­ents with other viral infec­tions expe­ri­ence hea­ring dis­or­ders. The­se include, for exam­p­le, meas­les, mumps or viral meningitis.

The ana­ly­sis of the data show­ed that Covid 19 pati­ents actual­ly have more hea­ring dis­or­ders. 14.8 per­cent of pati­ents repor­ted that they had deve­lo­ped tin­ni­tus or that it had got­ten worse after being dischar­ged from the hos­pi­tal. Hea­ring impair­ment occur­red in 7.6 per­cent of the pati­ents. In most cases it star­ted abrupt­ly and both ears were affec­ted. Howe­ver, the­re have also been cases whe­re this dete­rio­ra­ti­on in hea­ring deve­lo­ped gra­du­al­ly and was only uni­la­te­ral. Accor­ding to the stu­dy, 7.2 per­cent said they suf­fe­r­ed from diz­ziness cau­sed by inner ear dys­func­tion. The dis­or­ders in the ear were seen in both seve­re and mild cases of Covid 19 patients. 

Relationships unclear so far

The results of the inves­ti­ga­ti­ons sug­gest that the­re is a con­nec­tion bet­ween a Sars-CoV‑2 infec­tion and hea­ring impair­ment. How this comes about, howe­ver, can­not yet be cla­ri­fied. It is con­ceiva­ble that the coro­na virus direct­ly affects the epi­the­li­al cells in the midd­le ear or that the­re is inflamm­a­ti­on of the audi­to­ry ner­ve or the inner ear. Howe­ver, it is also pos­si­ble that the immu­ne sys­tem reacts incor­rect­ly to the Sars-CoV‑2 infec­tion and defen­se cells attack the tis­sue in the ear. The sci­en­tists also cite the dis­rup­ti­on of the blood sup­p­ly as a pos­si­ble cau­se. Becau­se it is alre­a­dy known that Sars-CoV‑2 can also cau­se blood clot­ting dis­or­ders and thrombosis.

Even though hea­ring loss after Covid-19 is rela­tively rare, experts say it needs more atten­ti­on. The rese­arch duo, who­se results were published in the “Inter­na­tio­nal Jour­nal of Audio­lo­gy”, the­r­e­fo­re calls for fur­ther inves­ti­ga­ti­ons. In addi­ti­on, tho­se affec­ted are asked to seek tre­at­ment quick­ly in the event of hea­ring loss or seve­re hea­ring impair­ment so that the hea­ring loss can be reversed.

Source: ntv.de, jaz

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