Bilateral Slow-Onset Hearing Loss

11 Bilateral Slow-Onset Hearing Loss

Eric L. Slattery, Timothy E. Hullar, and Lawrence R. Lustig

Bilateral slow-onset hearing loss is one of the most common reasons patients visit an otolaryngologist. Often a thorough history, physical examination, and audiogram are all that is necessary to arrive at a working diagnosis.

image Sensorineural Hearing Loss: Inner Ear


Presbycusis, or age-associated hearing loss, is the most common cause of bilateral slow-onset sensorineural hearing loss. It is prevalent over the age of 65 and becomes more common with increasing age. There may be tinnitus but no other associated symptoms. History and physical examination are otherwise normal.

Hereditary Hearing Impairment

See Chapter 9 for a discussion of hearing loss as a result of hereditary hearing impairment.

Noise-Induced Hearing Loss

See Chapter 10 for a discussion of noise-induced hearing loss.


See Chapter 9 for a discussion of hearing loss caused by ototoxicity.


Hearing loss as a result of barotrauma may be unilateral (see Chapter 10).

Meniere Disease

Hearing loss resulting from Meniere disease has other associated symptoms and is rarely bilateral (see Chapter 9).

Autoimmune Hearing Loss

Autoimmune hearing loss is often unilateral (see Chapter 9).

Radiation-Induced Inner Ear Injury

Hearing loss resulting from radiation-induced inner ear injury is often unilateral (see Chapter 9).

Spirochetal Diseases

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Jun 5, 2016 | Posted by in OTOLARYNGOLOGY | Comments Off on Bilateral Slow-Onset Hearing Loss
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