How does the incidence of sudden hearing loss vary by age?

Updated: Aug 28, 2019
  • Author: Neeraj N Mathur, MBBS, MS, DNB(ENT), MNAMS, FAMS; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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Answer

People of all age groups are affected by sudden hearing loss, but fewer cases are reported in children and the elderly. The peak incidence appears to be in the sixth decade of life. Young adults have incidence rates similar to those of middle-aged adults. The median age at presentation ranges from 40-54 years. (In the Kim study from South Korea, however, most patients presenting with unilateral SSNHL were in their 60s. [9] ) The occurrence of sudden hearing loss across all age groups is an indication of the multifactorial nature of this clinical problem.

A literature review by Sara et al indicated that the onset of bilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss tends to occur at a younger age than the unilateral form. [11]


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