Features of Otolithic Dysfunction in Patients with Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss at Different Ages


Objective: To observe the otolithic function in sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSHL) patients in different age groups by using vestibular evoked myogenic potentials (VEMPs). Methods: One hundred and seventy unilateral SSHL patients were divided into 5 age groups. The 170 affected ears belonged to study group. The opposite healthy ears of 170 patients and 138 normal ears of 69 age and sex-matched normal people at different ages were set as control groups. Ocular VEMP (oVEMP) and cervical VEMP (cVEMP) both evoked by air-conducted sound (ACS) were employed for vestibular otolithic function assessment. Results: The response rates of cVEMP and oVEMP were lower and abnormal rates were higher in affected ears of SSHL patients compared to the opposite healthy ears and normal control ears in all age groups, except patients over 60 years. The response rates of VEMPs significantly declined with increasing age, not only in normal control ears, but also in affected and healthy ears of SSHL patients. But, the abnormal rates of VEMPs showed no significant difference in affected ears at different ages. Conclusions: Dysfunction of vestibular otolithic organs in SSHL patients presented respective features at different ages. It is necessary to consider the age when the clinicians determine the otolithic condition of patients based on the VEMPs.

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Niu, X. , Zhang, Q. , Xu, X. , Han, P. , Cheng, Y. , Gao, Y. , Zhang, R. , Yang, Y. , Chen, Z. , Hu, J. , Chen, Y. and Xu, M. (2015) Features of Otolithic Dysfunction in Patients with Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss at Different Ages. Journal of Biosciences and Medicines, 3, 1-8. doi: 10.4236/jbm.2015.310001.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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