While researchers have learned a lot of new information about the novel coronavirus over the past year, little is known about the long-term effects of COVID-19. However, one study from the University of Manchester and the NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) has established a link between COVID and auditory problems.
About the Study
The study, published in the International Journal of Audiology in February of this year, was led by Professor Kevin Munro and Ibrahim Almufarrij.
For the study, researchers reviewed data from 24 other studies involving patients who had contracted COVID-19. Rather than conducting their own hearing tests, most of the data was gathered through self-reported questionnaires and medical records.
“Though this review provides further evidence for an association, the studies we looked at were of varying quality so more work needs to be done,” explains Munro.
They found that among these patients whose records were reviewed, there was a:
- 8% occurrence of tinnitus.
- 6% occurrence of hearing loss.
- 2% occurrence of vertigo.
Additional Research Is Necessary
Munro reports, “There is an urgent need for a carefully conducted clinical and diagnostic study to understand the long-term effects of COVID-19 on the auditory system. It is also well-known that viruses such as measles, mumps and meningitis can cause hearing loss; little is understood about the auditory effects of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.”
Because of this, Munro and his research team are working on a year-long study that further investigates the long-term impact of COVID-19 on hearing health among patients who were treated in a hospital. The researchers are hopeful that they will be able to gather more information and accurately estimate the risk of developing auditory problems after having COVID-19.
The research team also hopes these studies will encourage people to continue following safety protocols when meeting up with loved ones at Hillcrest Park, as well as convince more people of the importance of getting vaccinated.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with a hearing professional, call the Hearing Center of Lake Charles today.