March 12, 2021, is World Kidney Day! In honor of World Kidney Day, today’s blog post will focus on how one’s kidneys actually can affect one’s hearing. Ears are delicate instruments, more complex than one might think. Due to their sensitive nature, one’s ears can both feel the effect of other bodily illnesses and be a signal of something amiss. Below, we shall take a deeper dive into how your kidneys affect your hearing, in particular.
Causes of Hearing Loss
Hearing loss has many causes and is happening to more of the population than ever before. It could be a conductive issue, which means that something is blocking the ear canal. It could be excessive bone growth (known as surfer’s ear), damage due to repeated ear infections, or impacted earwax. Sensorineural hearing loss, on the other hand, involves damage to the inner ear due to a vast range of causes. The most common ones are old age, loud noise exposure, head injury, genetics, and ototoxic drugs. Where does hearing loss due to kidney problems fall in this range?
Chronic Kidney Disease Patient Study
In October 2010, a study in Australia confirmed a link between hearing loss and chronic kidney disease. The study group consisted of the medical records of 2,564 patients ages 50 and over. Out of this group, 513 people had chronic kidney disease. Over 50% of this CKD group had some form of hearing loss, while only 28.3% of patients without CKD had hearing loss. Moreover, 30% of the CKD group had severe hearing loss, while only 10% of the other group suffered from severe hearing loss. The correlation between CKD and hearing loss was undeniable.
How Kidneys Affect Hearing
While correlation does not mean causation necessarily, medical experts can see how kidney health can affect one’s hearing. For example, if the patient takes ototoxic drugs to treat the disease, one of the effects could be hearing loss. In addition, unhealthy kidneys, which contain harmful toxins, could also damage the nerves in the inner ear. Kidney tissues and inner ear tissues have similarities, so it is more likely for them to suffer or thrive in a similar fashion.
Trust the Experts at Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions
Need help with your hearing? Clarity Hearing can help. Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions is an independently owned and operated clinic that focuses on quality of care and personalized, friendly service to the surrounding areas of Ellicott City, Catonsville, Columbia. Our Doctors of Audiology are highly trained with advanced degrees and take the time to provide the personalized care and attention that you need and deserve. We provide advanced hearing aid options that are personally calibrated with cutting-edge digital technology to fit your hearing loss, your unique ear anatomy, and your individual listening needs.