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Acta Otolaryngol. 2007 Nov;127(11):1168-75.

Idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss: results drawn from the Swedish national database.

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Division of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology and Technical Audiology, Department of Neuroscience and Locomotion, Linköping University, University Hospital, SE 58185 Linköping, Sweden.



The first results from 300 patients in a Swedish national database for sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL) demonstrate that corticosteroids or 'no treatment at all' are the treatment options in use today. No significant difference in outcome was seen between treated and non-treated patients. Since spontaneous recovery might be the cause, a placebo-controlled randomized study is required before a positive effect of corticosteroids can be asserted.


To investigate the treatment policy for SSNHL in Sweden, the effect on outcome, and which variables are of value in predicting the outcome.


A national database was developed in Sweden which gathers data from patients with SSNHL. A form is used for data collection covering background, current disease, examinations, and treatment. Audiograms at the onset of SSNHL and after 3 months are analyzed.


Of 300 patients, 208 were considered to have idiopathic SSNHL; 50% were treated with corticosteroids, 44% did not receive any treatment. The treated patients had the same outcome as the non-treated patients. The time interval from onset of SSNHL to start of treatment was of importance for the outcome irrespective of type of audiogram or results from laboratory tests. Higher age and heredity for hearing loss gave a significantly lower chance of improvement.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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