Sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSHL) is a hearing loss that occurs suddenly and without warning. It is usually unilateral, meaning it affects only one ear. The hearing loss can be mild, moderate, or severe. In some cases, it can be total hearing loss.
The cause of SSHL is unknown in most cases. However, it is thought to be due to damage to the inner ear, which is responsible for hearing. This damage can be caused by a variety of factors, including viral infections, autoimmune diseases, and vascular problems.
There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for SSHL. However, some treatments have been shown to be effective in improving hearing in some people. One of these treatments is hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT).
HBOT is a treatment that involves breathing pure oxygen in a pressurized chamber. This increases the amount of oxygen that is available to the body’s tissues, including the inner ear.
There is some evidence that HBOT can be effective in improving hearing in people with SSHL. According to a recent study, adding hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been shown to improve outcomes for sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL). A recent study showed that patients who had a combination therapy of steroids and hyperbaric oxygen had a 61% higher chance of achieving complete hearing recovery than those that just got steroids.
The optimal treatment regimen for HBOT in SSHL is not yet fully established. However, most studies have used a regimen of 10 to 20 sessions of 90 minutes each.
HBOT is generally considered to be safe, but it does have some potential side effects, such as dizziness, nausea, and ear pain. These side effects are usually mild and go away on their own.
In conclusion, hyperbaric oxygen therapy can lead to significant improvement of pure tone hearing thresholds in patients with SSHL who failed primary corticosteroid treatment and are within 4 weeks of the onset of deafness. If you are considering HBOT for SSHL, it is important to talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of this treatment.