According to a study, there are some antibiotics that can save your life, but they may also cause hearing loss. Lab mice were studied, and it was concluded that inflammation was a key factor in the loss of hearing abilities. Ion channels from the sensory hair cells located in the inner ear become more absorbent to antibiotics - or aminoglycosides - which make the cells become more sensitive to the harmful effects of the drugs.
Common aminoglycoside antibiotics, such as gentamicin, are used by many people because they work efficiently on a wide range of bacteria. They are occasionally used to treat the microbes that may resist a multitude of other antibiotics.
Aminoglycosides are helpful when treating infections if the microbe cannot be identified.
Advantages for Newborns
Newborns have a huge benefit if they are treated for infections with aminoglycosides, because these diseases can be fatal within a day or two - it is too soon for test results to disclose the microbe that is culpable for the disease.
It has been proven that aminoglycosides, such as gentamicin, are linked to hearing loss. As a result, babies who are in neonatal intensive care units, where aminoglycosides have been used, are prone to a higher rate of hearing loss. In fact, they are six times more likely than a healthy full-term baby to have loss of hearing.
Lab mice - who could hear - were tested for the effects of gentamicin and its correlation to hearing loss.
Researchers discovered that infections and inflammation made ion channels, located in sensory hair cells, to be more absorbent to the drug. This caused more of the drug to be used by the sensitive hair cells located in the cochlea. The toxic results of the drug on the cells had increased.
Inflammation throughout the Body
Researchers discovered that one specific protein found in ion channels, known as TRPV1, expedited the entry of gentamicin into the hair cells, when an inflammation or immune response was present. The lab mice that were not bred with functioning TRPV1, were protected from hearing loss that was caused by gentamicin, even when there was body-wide inflammation.
Researchers suggest that healthcare providers should use antibiotics that do not raise the risk of hearing loss with infection throughout the body, if possible. If aminoglycosides are the only available alternative, healthcare providers can now be more alert, at a faster rate, for those who may need aftercare auditory rehabilitation.
This is crucial for children who are learning how to talk and listen. If there is any postponement in diagnosing hearing loss, there can be repercussions which include a delay in acquiring speech, difficulty in academics, and decreased income.
New approaches can be used to classify microbes that are responsible for infection at a faster pace, therefore doctors may not be as dependent on a vast range of antibiotics to prescribe to newborn infants.
If you, or a loved one, suffer from hearing loss due to the use of antibiotics or any other reason, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing Aids for a free hearing test and consultation to find out if we have a solution that will work for you.