Recently, I saw an ENT patient who was complaining of a sudden hearing loss
affecting her right ear, onset occurring several months ago. My assessment
revealed a moderately-severe high frequency sensorineural hearing loss above
1500-2000 Hz for the right ear, and normal hearing sensitivity for her left ear.
Acoustic reflexes present at expected levels for ipsi and contra stimulation for
both ears. However, reflex decay noted for right ipsi and left contra
stimulation. WDS excellent for both ears.
I was quite surprised to see the decay (as we always are!), and repeated the
test several times, only to get the same results.
This woman also has a history of hydrocephalus as a child, and had several
shunts placed, the most recent at ten years of age (she is 33 years old now)
The ENT was also surprised to see the decay, and queried me about my knowledge
of hydrocephalus and hearing loss, of which I am sorry to say I have none. He
was wondering if the decay could be a result of any structural changes in her
brain from the hydrocephalus. He wants to send her for a CT scan, but is afraid
that the radiologist will focus on the old structural changes rather than any
abnormalities that may be causing the hearing loss/decay.
Is there anyone out there who has seen similar cases? Any insight or experience
would be greatly appreciated.
Kimberly A. Eskritt, M.Cl.Sc., Reg CASLPO