Medical Conditions of Hearing Loss

There are numerous causes for hearing loss, some are genetic or age related, others due to exposure to noise or a toxin. Several common medical conditions can occur that may alter hearing and are very important to identify by a trained physician, because if treated early, the hearing loss progression may be stopped or reversed.

The key to preventing worsened hearing or deafness, is a comprehensive medical evaluation by an ear specialist when hearing loss:

  • Progresses rapidly (sudden hearing loss should be evaluated ASAP)
  • Is greater on one side more than the other (asymmetric)
  • Fluctuates (increases or decreases for no apparent reason)
  • Occurs in individuals <50 years of age

Conditions such as cholesteatoma, otosclerosis, stenosis/obstructions of the ear canal typically result in mechanical problems in conducting sound and speech to the inner ear.

Other conditions of the hearing and balance nerves or the delicate inner ear mechanism, can be affected by acoustic neuroma tumors or Meniere’s disease. Click to view an expanded list of medical conditions.

Please select the specific condition on the left to learn more about how it occurs, and what can be done to treat it.