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Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 2019 Dec;128(12):1198-1202. doi: 10.1177/0003489419866219. Epub 2019 Aug 1.

Cochlear-Vestibular Impairment due to West Nile Virus Infection.

Author information

1
Department of Neuroscience DNS, Otolaryngology Section, Padova University, Padova, Italy.
2
Unit of Tropical and Infectious Diseases, Azienda Ospedaliera- Padova University, Padova, Italy.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

West Nile virus (WNV) has been spreading over the last 20 years. Human infection is asymptomatic in most cases. When the disease becomes clinically manifest, it may involve a range of issues, from a mild infection with flu-like symptoms to a neuroinvasive disease. Albeit rarely, WNV-associated sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) has also been reported. Here we describe two new cases of SNHL and balance impairment caused by WNV infection.

METHODS:

The patients were investigated with repeated audiometric tests and, for the first time, videonystagmography was also used.

RESULTS:

Unlike findings in the few other published cases, an improvement in audiometric thresholds and vestibular function was documented in both of our patients.

CONCLUSIONS:

In the light of our findings, a prospective study would be warranted on a large series of patients with WNV infection in order: (i) to better define the epidemiology of the related cochlear-vestibular involvement; and (ii) to elucidate the virus-related changes to peripheral and central auditory and vestibular functions.

KEYWORDS:

West Nile virus; bilateral sensorineural hearing loss; cochlear; disorders of equilibrium; vestibular

PMID:
31366220
DOI:
10.1177/0003489419866219
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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