Do You Have Hearing Loss?

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Kidney Disease and Hearing Loss

According to the American Journal of Kidney Disease, older Americans with chronic kidney disease are more likely to suffer from hearing loss compared to healthy individuals of the same age.   Approximately 26 million Americans are currently diagnosed with chronic kidney disease.  Not only is the incidence of hearing loss about 50% greater in this population vs. the general population, but hearing loss that does occur as a co-morbid condition to kidney disease tends to be more severe in nature than in individuals with no kidney disease. 

Why does chronic kidney disease increase the risk of hearing loss?

  1. Toxins that accumulate during kidney failure can damage nerves in the inner ear. 
  2. Certain medications used to treat kidney ailments are ototoxic and can adversely affect hearing. 
  3. Kidney disease and hearing loss share common risk factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and advanced age. 
  4. Structural and functional similarities between tissues in the inner ear and in the kidney may make them both sensitive to genetic disruptions during embryologic development. 

Hearing loss negatively impacts social communication, and psychological and emotional well-being.  If you suffer from chronic kidney disease, be proactive and manage other underlying health conditions, including hearing loss.  Early detection and treatment of hearing loss will help ensure a better quality of life!  Hearing evaluations can be scheduled at The Center for Audiology's Houston or Pearland locations by calling 713-255-0035.