July 7, 2023

Hearing Loss After Cancer Treatment

Hearing Loss

It is well known that there are many side effects of chemotherapy and radiation treatments, but did you know that cancer survivors have an increased risk of hearing loss and tinnitus? 

Research has revealed that certain chemotherapy medications and radiation therapy can cause ototoxicity.  

What Is Ototoxicity? 

Ototoxicity refers to drug or chemical damage to the auditory system that occurs after exposure to medications or chemicals that affect the inner ear. Ototoxicity can cause permanent sensorineural hearing loss and persistent tinnitus. Studies have shown that 50% of cancer survivors treated with platinum containing chemotherapies were found to have significant hearing loss and tinnitus after treatment.  

Ototoxicity Statistics

  • Ototoxic medications can result in hearing loss, tinnitus, hyperacusis, dizziness, 
    or vertigo 
  • Ototoxicity can occur in all age groups, affecting between 23%-50% of adults and up to 60% of children taking ototoxic medications 
  • Around 10% of people taking aminoglycoside antibiotics experience ototoxicity  

Hearing Aids Can Help 

If you have experienced difficulty hearing, persistent ringing in the ears, or balance problems since completing chemotherapy or using another form of cancer treatment, you should have your hearing examined.  

While sensorineural hearing loss is irreversible, there are management options. Hearing aids can help by providing amplification and providing your brain with the sounds it needs to stay healthy. Studies have shown that 80% of hearing loss cases can be treated with hearing aids.  

Call AnyPlace Audiology today at +1 (737) 237-1340 to schedule a hearing exam or to discuss how hearing aids can help you!