Audiologist Doing A Hearing Test

Hearing Loss & Covid-19

Hearing loss related to Covid-19 is the subject of ongoing research in the field of otolaryngology, as well as the optimal route for steroid administration as treatment.

Sudden onset sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL) is frequently seen by otolaryngologists. While the exact cause of the disease is still unknown, the most likely factor is a viral infection. Immediate steroids are the best treatment to improve prognosis.

In a recent case, a 45 year old patient with asthma experienced a week of hearing loss while in the hospital for treatment of Covid-19. In another case, a 60 year old man with severe Covid-19, requiring ITU stay, developed right-sided deafness and left-sided hearing loss. Steroids proved to be an effective treatment.

Hearing loss has been seen in patients with both COVID-19 and influenza virus. Despite the low numbers of studies, amongst the considerable literature on COVID-19, and the various symptoms associated with the virus, there is a lack of discussion on the relationship between COVID-19 and hearing. Significant future research should consider the possibility of a relationship between COVID-19 and SSNHL.