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Labyrinthitis
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Labyrinthitis

My wife was diagnosed with labyrinthitis two weeks ago and has so far lost her normal hearing in her right ear. When we went to see the doctor a week into her infection, the nurse tested her hearing in her right ear and could detect hearing of high tones, but nothing else. My wife's balance (after five days of dizziness and nausea) has improved, but her hearing in her right ear hasn't returned! Is this normal? Is she expected to get her hearing back at some point? She  is very healthy, exercises regularly, is an ex-smoker, never touches alcohol and has less than her ideal weight. She has never suffered of anything like this before!

We're really hoping this will pass!
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OK--what kind of doctor did you see? She needs to see an EAR SPECIALIST if she hasn't already, and she needs to do so IMMEDIATELY.

Did they treat the hearing loss with something like high-dose steroids (e.g., prednisone 60 mg to start and tapering off) and antivirals? If not, get in to see an OTOLOGIST (ear specialist) the first thing Monday morning, if not sooner. Sudden hearing loss is a medical emergency. The sooner it is treated, the better the chance for recovering hearing.

If she has not started to regain any hearing after two weeks, her chances of getting it back are diminishing.

Good luck to her. I lost my hearing on one side suddenly (due to sneezing, not labyrinthitis) 9 years ago and two family-practice docs blew it off. I was not diagnosed and treated until a month later, and I never recovered any hearing. I just got a Baha implant last week to help me hear sounds from my bad left side.

Nancy T.
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