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Old 11-17-2009, 04:55 PM   #1
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Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

This is my first post to this site, although my wife used the site when gathering information about hip resurfacing surgery she had. She found it very useful and informative. About 3 weeks ago I woke up with my right ear feeling like it was half stopped up. Thought it would just go away but it did not. Tried wax drops with no results so I made an appt with my ENT doctor. I was diagnosed today with Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss (SSHL). The way I understand it, there is no fluid in my ear so the damage is with the nerves in the ear. I took the hearing tests and the hearing in my right ear is about 1/2 of the left. I will go for an MRI Thursday to rule out Acoustic Neuroma (tumor) as a cause for the hearing loss. I was prescribed prednisone for 10 days and Famcliclovir for a week.

I have found some topics on this thru the Board Index and a Google search. I had a slight ringing in my ear last nite but nothing major at this point. It appears to me that SSHL is something that has a slight chance of successful treatment but it did not appear too optimistic from the posts on the forum. I am resigning myself to the fact that the hearing may not improve and hoping that I do not have the severe ringing problem (Tinnitus?) or vertigo issues that some of you have had. I feel for the persons with that problem because it appears to me that it is a sound you can't stop and I'm sure the lack of sleep wears on you.

I am in my first day of medicine and have added the Vitamin E based on the suggestions of one post. Any other information that anyone has or success stories will be greatly appreciated. I'll post my results of my treatment as it goes along.

 
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Old 11-17-2009, 06:01 PM   #2
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

Quote:
Originally Posted by Denali2010 View Post
This is my first post to this site, although my wife used the site when gathering information about hip resurfacing surgery she had. She found it very useful and informative. About 3 weeks ago I woke up with my right ear feeling like it was half stopped up. Thought it would just go away but it did not. Tried wax drops with no results so I made an appt with my ENT doctor. I was diagnosed today with Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss (SSHL). The way I understand it, there is no fluid in my ear so the damage is with the nerves in the ear. I took the hearing tests and the hearing in my right ear is about 1/2 of the left. I will go for an MRI Thursday to rule out Acoustic Neuroma (tumor) as a cause for the hearing loss. I was prescribed prednisone for 10 days and Famcliclovir for a week.

I have found some topics on this thru the Board Index and a Google search. I had a slight ringing in my ear last nite but nothing major at this point. It appears to me that SSHL is something that has a slight chance of successful treatment but it did not appear too optimistic from the posts on the forum. I am resigning myself to the fact that the hearing may not improve and hoping that I do not have the severe ringing problem (Tinnitus?) or vertigo issues that some of you have had. I feel for the persons with that problem because it appears to me that it is a sound you can't stop and I'm sure the lack of sleep wears on you.

I am in my first day of medicine and have added the Vitamin E based on the suggestions of one post. Any other information that anyone has or success stories will be greatly appreciated. I'll post my results of my treatment as it goes along.
Sounds like my case except I've been careless and my hearing has been fluctuating for 2 years. Sometimes it takes a whole month to go back to normal. Tomorrow I get MRI results from the doctor to rule out a tumor and to have a better view of the auditory canals.

 
Old 11-22-2009, 10:09 AM   #3
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

I'm halfway thru my Prednisone / Famciclovir treatment and there has been no real improvement in hearing or in the ringing going away. However, the condition has not worsened either so I am thankful for that as the condition is tolerable at this time. If this is as bad as it gets then I can deal with this. Had my MRI last Thursday and am awaiting those results. Will post when I receive them.

 
Old 11-24-2009, 04:40 AM   #4
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

I suffer too from SSHL since August 2007.

It appears to be the most common location that people who have SSHL post to. It might of help to some users on these boards as well. This is a link to a paper I found published in Brazil. It puts SSHL in the most objective context that I have seen to date.
http://www.arquivosdeorl.org.br/conteudo/acervo_eng.asp?id=443

Last edited by moderator2; 11-24-2009 at 06:52 AM. Reason: do not post links to other forums

 
Old 11-25-2009, 03:40 AM   #5
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

Thanks for the article, it was helpful. I did get my MRI results and there was no acoustic neuroma so that was good. Still no improvement or worsening in the hearing at this early time. I'm sorry to hear of your suffering from it as well. Has your hearing stayed the same or worsened since 2007? Are hearing aids a solutionn to hear better? I only have slight tinnitus as this time and am curious if this just stays the same or worsens? It is manageable at this point so I'm hoping it would at least just stay the same.

 
Old 11-26-2009, 07:54 AM   #6
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

I was diagnosed with a "dead ear" so a hearing aid is of no use to me. Everyone’s symptoms are more or less the same....woke up with ringing sound in ear, went to MD....prescribed course of steroids... . had MRI to verify if there was an acoustic neuroma…...nothing showed and the hearing loss remains the same. Typically, if the hearing has not returned within 1 week, it is unlikely to return. However, I am not a clinician so don’t take this as fact. Other symptoms can include a feeling of "Fullness" in your head, also accompanied by balance issues. Typically, the fullness and balance disappear, however, the tinnitus remains in the bad ear. Where these conditions remain it is known as Menieres Disease. I am in contact with others who have SSHL - what we are seeing anecdotally is that most people seem to have lost hearing the left ear and not the right (8/1). My tinnitus is brutal....it is extremely loud in my bad ear.
Regarding therapies, there is no confirmed cure. I came across this paper today....you may find it interesting
http://www.dizziness-and-balance.com/disorders/hearing/shl.htm

Last edited by moderator2; 11-26-2009 at 07:57 AM. Reason: posted contact info - please read the posting rules

 
Old 11-30-2009, 04:45 PM   #7
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

Thanks for the link..one of my co-workers had forwarded it to me as well. Sorry to hear about the loud ringing in your ear as I don't think mine is as loud as what you describe. It is always there but not to the point where it will affect my sleeping at this point. I'm just hoping that it does not escalate. I have my follow up doctor appt tomorrow. I expect they will measure my hearing again since the first visit but I don't think it has improved or declined since I took the medication. I expect that there will be nothing else they will be able to do. If my condition just stays the same then I would consider myself fortunate based upon some of the other posts I have read as there appear to be some very quality of life issues associated with this diagnosis associated with the ringing, vertigo and balance issues. It also appears that if you don't get relief in the 1st 2 weeks there is nothing at this point that appears to correct the disorder.

 
Old 12-03-2009, 03:22 PM   #8
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

I had my 2 week follow up doctor visit. They re-checked my hearing and this led to some potentially positive news. The hearing was a little better in my bad ear. When they do the hearing test they are able to test the hearing as it comes thru the eardrum and test it if it is just heard by the nerve that goes to the brain. The results were that when the hearing is just heard by the nerve I heard as good in my bad ear as my good ear. When the sound went thru the eardrum it was worse in the bad ear. Since the hearing was good thru the nerve, this raises the possibility that the nerve is not damaged and that it is something in the outer ear. If the damage is in the outer ear area it can be repaired. He thinks the damage may be to the bones on the other side of the eardrum.

The plan is to wait 3 months and get tested again. If the hearing gets worse thru the eardrum and stays the same thru the nerve then it would indicate that the bones are damaged and the nerve is not. The plan would be to repair the bones on the other side of the eardrum. So, for right now I'm in waiting mode for 3 months and see what happens. Which is better news than what I was expecting since if the damage is to the nerve there is nothing that can be done.

 
Old 12-07-2009, 04:05 PM   #9
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

I just signed onto this thread and am in the same (sinking) boat as the two gentlemen already posting. Except I have had SSHL since last winter, when what I was told was probably a bad virus attacked my inner ear. I awoke one morning partially deaf in my left ear (so, whoever is keeping track, it is now 9 to 1 "favoring" the left ear. I took the Prednisone, the MRI, the whole ball of wax, under the care of one of the top doctors at House Ear Institute, considered at the top of the world's specialists, who basically told me to try the hearing aids. I got fitted for them. Basically, they are NOT hearing aids of the standard variety. The thingy in my left ear is basically a microphone that radios whatever it hears over to a receiver thingy in my right ear. All for $3,000 out of pocket - no insurance will pay for this.

The law gives you 45 days to like or dislike those gizmos, and return them for a full refund if you end up not liking them. I found them to be unsatisfactory and returned them. The audiologist then told me that roughly half of her patients with single-sided hearing loss did return them. They just do not improve hearing, and in fact, I found it to be more irritating than useful.

So what are we left with?

Stem cell therapy is proceeding on a cure at Stanford University, where a German doctor has successfully implanted stem cells from a mouse into a chicken's ear and grown new cilia (the little hairs inside our inner ears that have been destroyed). He is on track to open shop for business in five years or so. He is very satisfied that this will work and he just needs to work his way up the mammal chain to humans, with the proper approvals, of course. The stem cells would be taken from the patient's own belly fat, so I would have lots for him to choose from.

In England, where research using embryonic stem cells is legal, the results have been disappointing. The embryonic stem cells make cilia, for sure, but do not know when to "turn off" causing a jam in the inner ear and offsetting any potential value in their use for this purpose. Adult stem cells do know when to "turn off" and use of the patient's own stem cells also obviates the body's tendency to reject foreign objects.

Best wishes to you all,
Doug

Last edited by moderator2; 12-07-2009 at 04:33 PM. Reason: please do not leave huge quotes in your messages - try using the Quick Reply button instead of Quote Reply

 
Old 12-08-2009, 06:21 AM   #10
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Re: Sudden Sensineural Hearing Loss - Prednisone Treatment

I would suggest saving yourself lots of time and money by finding a neuro-ENT, if it is a nerve problem they are the only ones that will be able to diagnose and treat. Your regular ENT will waste your time and $. If your ENT can't refer you to one, start calling neurologists and local hospitals. Good luck.

 
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