Shingles often denote the feeling of a painful, itchy rash on some regions of the body. But did you know that shingles can also impact your hearing and balance? In some cases, it can cause hearing loss.
When shingles cause problems to a person’s hearing and balance, it presents itself in one of two different health issues:
Getting shingles does not automatically lead to hearing loss. Ramsay Hunt syndrome may occur due to complications with shingles that cause facial weakness and paralysis. It can include dizziness, hearing loss, or a rash near the ear.
Hearing Loss and Shingles
Most patients who experience hearing loss due to Ramsay Hunt syndrome generally have a temporary loss. Permanent hearing loss and muscle weakness may occur if there is a delay in intervening. A study showed that patients with Ramsay Hunt experience worse hearing loss in the high-frequency range than in the low-frequency range. Patients with vertigo had more severe hearing loss than those without balance problems.
The National Organization for Rare Disorders revealed that Ramsay Hunt affects 5 out of 100,000 people. Those cases might be higher due to underreporting - it’s difficult to diagnose in patients who do not develop a rash.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss, please contact us at Pure Sound for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.