1887
Volume 2021, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0253-8253
  • EISSN: 2227-0426

Abstract

Background: Sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL) can be a feature of COVID-19. It may present alone or with other symptoms of the disease. However, there is little written in the literature about its occurrence. We aimed to evaluate the socio-clinical characteristics and outcome of confirmed mild- to moderate COVID-19 cases with SSNHL in Tikrit city, Iraq.

Materials and Methods: This descriptive study was conducted at the Otolaryngology Department, Tikrit General Hospital, Tikrit city, Iraq. The period of the study was from December 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021.Mild and moderate COVID-19 subjects confirmed by real-time polymerase reaction were included in the study. Detailed demographic (age, gender, and smoking habit) and clinical characteristics (onset and duration of deafness, side, severity, associated ear, nose, and throat symptoms, and comorbidity) were recorded for every patient. Outcomes following the steroid treatment protocol were also registered.

Results: SSNHL was identified in 26 patients, of whom 20 (76.9%) were women, 20 (76.9%) were in the age group ≥ 30 years, and 21 (80.8%) were non-smokers. Around three-quarters of the subjects were identified within the first week of deafness occurrence. Bilateral (18/26) was more common than unilateral deafness (8/26); therefore, the total number of deaf ears was 44. Besides, bilateral symmetrical deafness (13/18) outnumbered the asymmetrical type (5/18). Around three-quarters were of moderate severity. The most common otological symptom was tinnitus (25/26). The most common nose and throat symptom was anosmia (6/26). The mean hearing threshold before and after treatment with oral steroids ± intratympanic steroids was 50.91 ± 11.777 dB and 40.24 ± 15.693, respectively. One patient with bilateral SSNHL was lost to follow-up; the remaining number of deaf ears was 42, and half of them were partially improved. The outcome of the treatment showed no statistically significant relation with the duration, side, and severity of SSNHL (>0.05).

Conclusion: The majority of COVID-19-related SSNHL cases presented within one week of onset, with bilateral outnumbering unilateral cases. Tinnitus was the most common associated symptom. Treatment with steroids achieved partial improvement in half of the cases, and this outcome was not affected by the duration, side, and severity of deafness.

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2021-10-25
2021-12-02
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