What are the causes of sudden hearing loss?


Quick Answer

Sudden hearing loss can be caused by several factors, including autoimmune conditions of the inner ear and excessive use of opiate drugs, explains Rush University Medical Center. The condition can also occur if the cochlear artery of the inner ear becomes blocked. In certain cases, there is no identifiable cause.

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Full Answer

Additional causes of sudden deafness include head injuries, tumors that develop on the nerve that conjoins the brain and ear, circulation disorders and infectious diseases, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. Tests to determine sudden deafness and potential underlying causes include hearing tests, balance testing, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) tests and blood tests.

Individuals with sudden hearing loss often become aware of their symptoms upon waking or when attempting to use the phone, explains Hearing Link. In certain cases, sufferers may experience a popping sensation prior to loss of hearing in one or both ears. Symptoms that may accompany sudden deafness include dizziness and ringing or buzzing in the ears. Treatment for sudden deafness depends on the underlying cause and can include antibiotics and steroid injections. When an underlying cause for the condition cannot be determined, certain individuals may not receive any type of treatment at all but spontaneously recover in a few days.

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