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Laryngorhinootologie. 2009 Aug;88(8):524-7. doi: 10.1055/s-0028-1128133. Epub 2009 Feb 4.

[A present investigation of the epidemiology in idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss].

[Article in German]

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Klinik für Hals-Nasen-Ohrenheilkunde, Kopf- und Hals-Chirurgie, Plastische Operationen am Städtischen Klinikum Dresden-Friedrichstadt.


In the current AWMF guidelines "Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss" from 2004, the global incidence rate of idiopathic sudden hearing loss is quoted to be 5-20 cases in 100,000 people per year. Current and representative data, however, were not available. The rates of incidence reported in the literature vary by the factor 125. On the one hand, the causes are diffuse diagnostic criteria, and on the other hand the tendency toward the spontaneous remission of sudden hearing loss, which produces a case drop off for statistic purposes. The objective of the investigation at hand was a current epidemiological documentation of cases of ISSHL loss as confirmed by an ENT-specialist at the public health system based on Kassenärztliche Vereinigung Sachsen (regional Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians, Saxony) in charge of the main medical supply for outpatients in Saxony. A precise analysis of all patients with the diagnosis H 91.2-10 (th) ICD in 2004 was carried out in 25 of a total number of 30 medical ent-practices in the city of Dresden. Case history and audiograms of every patient were investigated. All cases of symptomatic hearing loss as well as all patients who did not live in the postal code area of the city of Dresden were systematically excluded from the study. Cases initially treated -in an inpatient setting were taken into consideration if the patients continued receiving treatment in medical practices. A total of 659 unambiguous cases of ISSHL could be ascertained for the year 2004. The calculation for 2004 for the population of the city of Dresden having 487 421 inhabitants results in an incidence of 160 cases of idiopathic sudden hearing loss per year per 100,000 inhabitants. The result emphasizes the fact that sudden hearing loss is not a rare disease according to criteria of WHO and the European Union (prevalence less than 50 per 100,000 inhabitants).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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