Prognosis of patients with idiopathic sudden hearing loss: role of vestibular assessment.
ABSTRACT To evaluate the correlation between caloric and vestibular evoked myogenic potential test results, initial audiogram data, and early hearing recovery, in patients with idiopathic sudden hearing loss.
One hundred and four patients with unilateral idiopathic sudden hearing loss underwent complete neurotological evaluation. Results for vestibular evoked myogenic potential and caloric testing were compared with patients' initial and final audiograms.
Overall, abnormal vestibular evoked myogenic potential responses occurred in 28.8 per cent of patients, whereas abnormal caloric test results occurred in 50 per cent. A statistically significant relationship was found between the type of inner ear lesion and the incidence of profound hearing loss. Moreover, a negative correlation was found between the extent of the inner ear lesion and the likelihood of early recovery.
In patients with idiopathic sudden hearing loss, the extent of the inner ear lesion tends to correlate with the severity of cochlear damage. Vestibular assessment may be valuable in predicting the final outcome.