Hearing Loss Can be Caused by This Disease

Image of a neural disease that would cause high-frequency hearing loss.

How often do you contemplate your nervous system? Probably not all that regularly. As long as your body is performing as it is supposed to, you have no reason to think about how your neurons are firing or whether nerves are sending correct messages along the electrical corridors in your body. But you will take a closer look when something isn’t working right and the nerves start to misfire.

There’s one particular condition, known as Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease, which can influence the nervous system on a relatively large scale, though the symptoms normally manifest mainly in the extremities. And there’s some evidence that implies that CMT can also cause high-frequency hearing loss.

Charot-Marie-Tooth Disease, What is it?

Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease is a set of inherited disorders. Essentially, these genetic disorders cause something to go wrong with your nerves or with the protective sheathing surrounding your nerves.

As a result, the impulses sent from your brain to those nerves (and from those nerves back to your brain) don’t travel all that well. A loss in motor function and sensation can be the outcome.

CMT can be present in numerous variations and a mixture of genetic considerations normally result in its expressions. For many people with CMT, symptoms start in the feet and can work their way up into their arms. And, high-frequency hearing loss, curiously, has a high rate of occurrence among those with CMT.

The Cochlear Nerve: A Connection Between CMT and Hearing Loss

There has always been an anecdotal link between hearing loss and CMT (meaning that inside of the CMT community everyone has heard others talk about it). And it was difficult to realize the connection between loss of sensation in the legs and problems with the ears.

A scientific study firmly established the connection just recently when a group of researchers evaluated 79 people with CMT at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

The results were rather decisive. Low to moderate frequencies were heard very nearly perfectly by those who had CMT. But high-frequency sounds (in the moderate region particularly) were effortlessly heard by all of the participants. Based on this research, it seems pretty likely that CMT can at least be linked to high-frequency loss of hearing.

The Cause of Hearing Loss and How to Deal With It

At first, it could be perplexing to attempt to recognize the connection between high-frequency hearing loss and CMT. Like all other parts of your body rely on correctly functioning nerves. Your ears are exactly the same.

The hypothesis is, CMT impacts the cochlear nerve so sounds in the high-frequency range aren’t able to be interpreted. Some sounds, including some voices, will be hard to hear. Notably, understand voices in crowded or noisy rooms can be a tangible obstacle.

This kind of hearing loss is commonly managed with hearing aids. There’s no known cure for CMT. Modern hearing aids can select the exact frequencies to boost which can give considerable assistance in fighting high-frequency hearing loss. Most modern hearing aids can also perform well in loud settings.

Many Reasons For Hearing Loss

Experts still aren’t completely sure why CMT and loss of hearing seem to co-exist quite so often (beyond their untested theory). But hearing aid technology offers a clear treatment for the symptoms of that loss of hearing. So scheduling an appointment to get a fitting for hearing aids will be a good decision for people who suffer from CMT.

There are numerous causes for hearing loss symptoms. Often, it’s a matter of loud sound contributing to injury to the ears. Blockages can be another cause. It appears that CMT can be still another cause of loss of hearing.

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