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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » hearing loss

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Author Topic: hearing loss
OtterJ
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Has anyone else had a hearing loss due to lyme or other coinfections? ENT recommended one hearing aid, although the other ear is somewhat affected, what kind of hearing aid am I looking for? Loss is in the upper registers and has to do with hearing speech.
Posts: 479 | From Oregon | Registered: Feb 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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Otter,

So very sorry to hear this.

Absolutely, lyme can cause varying degrees of hearing loss (even deafness) and other vestibular (inner, middle ear) damage &/or symptoms, too.

But, so can some of the medicines used to treat lyme - or other things. Even acetaminophen has been linked to hearing loss.

I don't think there is a particular range, though, as that would be rather individual and, likely, connected to whatever past hearing damage may have already been setting the stage (as it can for even decades).

That said, lyme often attacks Cranial Nerve VII and VIII.

Certain nutrients can help, some of the B-vitamins, etc.

I see you and I are in the same state. While OHSU is absolutely terrible regarding lyme (and for hyperacusis IF caused by lyme as the treatment is so very different and they really don't understand that).

Still, they have a Speech & Hearing center that does have some (otherwise) excellent researchers.

Before being assessed for a certain model of hearing aid - I suggest seeing one of the ILADS-educated LL NDs here in Oregon. They may be able to help restore or mitigate the trajectory of this.

Hyperbaric Oxygen treatments have been known to help, and a Glutathione IV may offer some relief.

Contact your area lyme support group for those names of the ILADS-educated LLNDs.

Be sure that you are addressing lyme adequately but, also, that your ears are protected in the process. It's not an easy dance at all.

Be sure to get the book: OTOTOXIC DRUGS EXPOSED by Neil G. Bauman. His link in the thread below lists many but there are so many more in the book.

And, LIVER SUPPORT is absolutely essential for reasons explained here:
---------

http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=1;t=065801

Topic: TINNITUS: Ringing Between The Ears; Vestibular, Balance, Hearing with compiled links - including HYPERACUSIS & SCD - Superior canal dehiscence
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Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
OtterJ
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Thanks, Keebler, I can get some of my symptoms to disappear with steroids, but who wants to take those? I am using NAC and Alpha Lipoc Acid for glutathione and have much more energy. My ears were a problem even before I started antibiotics. No one in my family has early hearing loss. My Handel Operas' are faint on my IPOD. Oh, well.
Posts: 479 | From Oregon | Registered: Feb 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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Looking over your past threads detail that will help others reply, you posted in the past few months:
----------------------

2006, I saw the tick, HUGE bulls eye rash

I woke up with Bell's and watched it for a day and then went to ER.

[interjecting here that you live in a very anti-lyme state with no LLMD]

You say: Infectious disease doc who originally said I did not have lyme (I knew better) stated that I had a herpes or shingles infection this October because Bell's Palsy did not manifest in "chronic" infection.

Now my LLND is saying the same thing.

I have seen E.N.T. Doctor for nerve inflammation in ear and he said there was no shingles/lesions.

I am just upset that my LLND is not treating lyme, now, not listening to me, (end quote by OtterJ)

-------

[Keebler talking here:

I see in another post that you have a Nephrologist so there is some kidney concern -- and that can affect ears, too. Kidney issues can also limit the choices of medications.

Is this why your ND does not want to treat lyme?

Also be aware that IBUPROFEN can cause kidney damage as it constricts the flow of blood through the vessels in the kidneys.]

-------

OtterJ posting on 25 January, 2012:

I had a repeat ELISA a week ago and it came back negative. The lab is in Salt Lake. My previous labs ELISA and Western blot were done by Stony Brook and were positive for IgM Lyme with ELISA at boderline.

They were done in 2010 with my tick bite in 2006. An infectious disease doctor repeated the test b.c. in his notes he had it as a lumbar puncture-- it wasn't it was a blood test. The new lab is now refusing to run an IgG Western Blot b.c. the new Elisa was negative.

Should I be amused?

In 2010, I had only 2 IgG bands. Anyone?

(end posts by OtterJ in Oregon)
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[ 04-03-2012, 08:27 PM: Message edited by: Keebler ]

Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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So, Dear Otter:

It seems like you have never gotten onto any formal treatment protocol for lyme by an ILADS-educated doctor.

While there are no LLMDs in your state, there are some LLNDs - but some NDs who THINK they are LL but are not really at all. I know because I trusted some of them until I learned more.

I'm not sure if the ND you've been seeing is really ILADS-educated or not but check with the lyme support group in your area.

They can also direct you to LLMDs in Washington state or California.

Looks like you've not been assessed for coinfections - nor for heavy metals (that can cause hearing loss, too).

You might consider RIFE treatment to lessen use of medicines that can be hard on ears. But heavy metal assessment is vital first.

I've just covered a lot of stuff, but please do not drop the ball on this. I think there could be a chance - a chance - to regain some ground or at least to halt the progression.

But - you need a good ILADS-educated LL doctor to guide you. Keep looking. Good luck.

Oh, if by chance you live near Gresham, there is an ILADS-educated LL ND there who is expert with some of the best rife machines there are. I've only spoken with him but was very impressed.

FIND A LL DOCTOR, NOW and your ears will thank you.

Now if that is just not possible (I know too well) then you will have to immerse yourself in constant study - but don't give up.

Take care.
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Keebler
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-
http://lyme.kaiserpapers.org/oregon.html

THE KAISER PAPERS - Lyme Disease in Oregon

- NOT FROM Kaiser Insurance - but ABOUT Kaiser.

Explains the medical-political atmosphere regarding the supposed absence of lyme in Oregon, regardless of any particular insurance plan.

SCROLL TO END OF PAGE FOR LYME SUPPORT GROUP LINKS IN OREGON.
--

Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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Sorry to say but, about that iPod. Ear experts advise that is best to NEVER use in-the-ear buds.

Over the ear headphone are better but should still be avoided during use of ototoxic drugs and with hearing loss where there can be progression from infection.

I hope you have a sound dock for your iPod or otherwise can hear it on speakers NOT right up at your ear nerves.

For TV, there is a new TV headphone set from Sennheiser that has separate L / R volume control.

Sennheiser HD65TV - many TVs now are impossible for ANYONE to hear, sadly. I find I need the headset to be able to hear speech and Sennheiser is the only headset that is kind enough to my ears. Best to keep it as low as possible and take breaks.

STEROIDS ?

You say that you could "get some of my symptoms to disappear with steroids, but who wants to take those?" (end quote).

So, I see the states ear doctors have suggested steroids (the ENTs here love steroids for any ear problem).

I assume you know that steroids can make lyme so much worse. However, there is a time and place for them and IF - IF - you were to have a good ILADS-educated LL doctor and were on a good lyme protocol, with coinfections and heavy metals addressed --

then - steroids could possibly save your hearing. Again, perhaps and only under the guidance of a true lyme expert to coordinate with the ear specialist.

Yet, there are other avenues to address inflammation. Many others.

Check this out:

http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi/topic/1/115258?

ASTAXANTHIN

----------------------

The supplements you are taking can help but if possible, a glutathione IV will likely be much more effective. Some of the LL NDs here do that.

If you surmise that this hearing damage might not be from lyme (even if triggered by it) but by past noise exposure, there are still some things that might help.

Hope you can look through that TINNITUS thread for the EAR SAFETY details.

and tips on how to more safely use steroids in an emergency situation:
--------------------------

http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi/topic/1/100984?#000000

Topic: what do STEROIDS actually do to us?
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[ 04-04-2012, 12:35 AM: Message edited by: Keebler ]

Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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You may need some of these links, too:
------------------

http://www.canlyme.com/seronegreasons.html

27 REASONS WHY A SERONEGATIVE TEST RESULT MIGHT OCCUR

----------------------------

http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=2;t=015508;p=0

Diagnosing Lyme Disease (&/or whatever else is going on)

Other tick-borne infections and other chronic stealth infections - as well as certain conditions - that can hold us back are discussed here.

-- VIRUSES listed in TIMACA's link. You mentioned that viruses may be connected to the hearing loss.

Valcyte or similar antiviral might help.

----------------------------

http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=2;t=013239;p=0

(What ILADS is) . . . WHY you need an ILADS-educated, Lyme Literate Doctor - starting with assessment / evaluation.
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[ 04-04-2012, 12:20 AM: Message edited by: Keebler ]

Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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Now, after all that I realized that I never answered your question:

"What kind of hearing aid" should you get?

An ear specialist would have to tell you that. And Neil Bauman's website and SHHH (Self Help for Hard of Hearing site) may have some details.

But all my efforts are intended to help prevent that.

If you have untreated infection(s) of any kind that affect your ear nerves, it's best to address that directly head on and there will likely be changes.

Hearing aid are very expensive and very few, if any, insurance companies cover them. If possible to hold off for a little bit until you know where you stand with infections & available treatment, my thinking is that you would be able to make a better financial decision a bit later.

If not, find a hearing aid that will adapt either direction. Know that for background noise, most amplify.

HYPERACUSIS, too?

If you have any HYPERACUSIS, that should be considered in the choice, so be sure to tell the audiologist. One can have both hearing loss for some ranges AND sensitivity to other frequencies at the same time.

Best of luck to you.
-

[ 04-04-2012, 02:36 AM: Message edited by: Keebler ]

Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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-
HEARING LOOP
----------------------

I just stumbled across an article I had saved:

The New York Times Science section - October 23, 2011

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/science/24loops.html?src=me&ref=general

The composer Richard Einhorn had despaired of truly enjoying a concert or Broadway show before encountering a hearing loop.

A HEARING AID THAT CUTS OUT ALL THE CLATTER

By JOHN TIERNEY

After he lost much of his hearing last year at age 57, the composer Richard Einhorn despaired of ever really enjoying a concert or musical again.

Even using special headsets supplied by the Metropolitan Opera and Broadway theaters, he found himself frustrated by the sound quality, static and interference.

Then, in June, he went to the Kennedy Center in Washington, where his Voices of Light oratorio had once been performed with the National Symphony Orchestra, for a performance of the musical Wicked.

There were no special headphones. This time, the words and music were transmitted to a wireless receiver in Mr. Einhorns hearing aid using a technology that is just starting to make its way into public places in America: a hearing loop.

There I was at Wicked weeping uncontrollably and I dont even like musicals, he said. For the first time since I lost most of my hearing, live music was perfectly clear, perfectly clean and incredibly rich.

His reaction is a common one. The technology, which has been widely adopted in Northern Europe, has the potential to transform the lives of tens of millions of Americans, according to national advocacy groups.

As loops are installed in stores, banks, museums, subway stations and other public spaces, people who have felt excluded are suddenly back in the conversation.

A hearing loop, typically installed on the floor around the periphery of a room, . . .

- Full article at link above.

Menu to the left of the article, see:

Interactive Features

& a list of articles about HEARING AIDS

-----------------

http://www.hearingloop.org/index.htm

HEARING LOOP.org
-

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Keebler
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-
http://www.sennheiserusa.com/tv-headphones-HD-65-TV-listening-system_504685

and

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_143HD65TV/Sennheiser-HD-65-TV.html

Sennheiser HD65TV

Headphones for TV, but also good for stereo

. . . . Independent left and right control, allowing users to balance the sound to individual preferences. . . .

. . . Closed dynamic headphones with 17' cable to attach to a TV or other audio source.

Cable includes in-line volume and balance control. . . .
-

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OtterJ
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Thanks Keebler, I am seeing a lyme literate doc(naturopath) (The one near Tigard)and appreciate the last info about the hearing aid. My ear holes are too small for ear buds and if I listened to head banging rock, I think I'd have deafness in all my ranges, not just the upper ones, which makes it difficult to understand speech some of the time. Manybites, I feel for you. I hope in the future that something other than mechanical devices can be found for hearing loss. I stink at reading lips, so the hearing aid is my best option for now.
Posts: 479 | From Oregon | Registered: Feb 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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-
Well, glad to hear you have a good LL ND. I have seen her twice (as funds would allow) and do think she is the best we have around here. Still, sometimes, other experts may be able to shed light on particular matters of interests so do keep learning.

I hope Dr. R can refer you to a good ear specialist. About loud music, assumptions are just out the window regarding hearing loss. What we think about all that is so often just not the case.


Update on headphones.

That particular headphone (Sennheiser HD 65 TV) sent tinnitus to the moon. I just received it yesterday.

I have to send it back and get a replacement for same model that I used for years (before it broke).

The Sennheiser HD 580 was just fine and did not zoom tinnitus for me with TV use. They've changed nothing about that pair I just thought the new TV ones might be better and they were cheaper.

But for those who may need one ear louder than the other, the 580 will not do that.

IF tinnitus is not an issue, they may also be fine but, today, the Sennheiser technician did explain to me why this happened. Something about electrical impedance being different in the TV pair.
-

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shazdancer
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Hi Otter, sorry to read that your hearing has been affected by tick-borne disease. Most of the consonant sounds (ssss, ffff, pppp, kkkk, etc.) are in the upper ranges, so it is no wonder that conversations are more difficult to understand (Me, too, and one ear often hears a 1/2 lower than the right as well.) A good audiologist can work with you to get the type of hearing aids you need.

If you are near a large city, you may find theaters with the Hearing Loop technology that Keebler mentioned, and many digital hearing aids are now Bluetooth enabled to work with your phone or other electronic devices using wireless technology. Oticon is one such brand.

Work with your audiologist to find what works for you.

Posts: 1558 | From the Berkshires | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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