This Disease Can Lead to Loss of Hearing

Image of a neural disease that would cause high-frequency hearing loss.

How frequently do you think about your nervous system? For most individuals, the answer would probably be not very often. Usually, you wouldn’t have to worry about how your neurons are sending messages to the nerves in your body. But you will take a closer look when something fails and the nerves start to misfire.

There’s one particular disease, known as Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease, which can impact the nervous system on a pretty large scale, though the symptoms normally manifest mainly in the extremities. And there’s some evidence to suggest that CMT can also lead to high-frequency loss of hearing.

What Is Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease?

Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease is a set of inherited conditions. In essence, these genetic conditions cause something to go wrong with your nerves or with the protective sheathing around your nerves.

As a result, the signals sent from your brain to those nerves (and from those nerves back to your brain) don’t progress all that well. A loss of motor function and sensation can be the outcome.

A combination of genetic factors usually results in the expression of symptoms, so CMT can be found in a number of variations. For many people who have CMT, symptoms begin in the feet and can work their way up into their arms. And, curiously, among those who have CMT, there is a higher rate of occurrence of high-frequency hearing loss.

The Cochlear Nerve: A Link Between CMT and Loss of Hearing

There’s always been an anecdotal connection between loss of hearing and CMT (which means that inside of the CMT community everyone has heard others tell stories about it). And it was tough to realize the connection between loss of sensation in the legs and issues with the ears.

The connection was firmly established by a scientific study just recently when a group of scientists examined 79 people with CMT at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

The findings were rather decisive. Low to moderate frequencies were heard very nearly perfectly by those who had CMT. But all of the individuals showed hearing loss when it came to the high-frequency sounds (usually around the moderate levels). high-frequency hearing loss, according to this research, is likely to be linked to CMT.

What is The Cause of Hearing Loss And How Can it be Treated?

At first, it might be puzzling to attempt to identify the connection between high-frequency hearing loss and CMT. Like all other parts of your body rely on properly functioning nerves. Your ears are the same.

The theory is, CMT affects the cochlear nerve so sounds in the high-frequency range aren’t able to be interpreted. Certain sounds, including some voices, will be hard to hear. In particular, understand voices in crowded or noisy rooms can be a real obstacle.

This type of hearing loss is normally managed with hearing aids. CMT has no known cure. Modern hearing aids can provide significant help in terms of fighting the effects of high-frequency hearing loss, isolating only those ranges of sounds to boost. Additionally, most modern hearing aids can be calibrated to function well inside of noisy conditions.

There Can be Various Causes For Hearing Loss

Beyond the unconfirmed theory, it’s still uncertain what the link between CMT and high-frequency hearing loss. But this type of hearing loss can be efficiently addressed using hearing aids. So making an appointment to get fitted for hearing aids will be a smart choice for people who suffer from CMT.

There are a range of causes for hearing loss symptoms. Often, it’s an issue of loud noise causing damage to the ears. Blockages can be yet another cause. It also looks as if CMT is another possible cause.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.