5 Medications That May Cause Hearing Loss

5 Medications That May Cause Hearing Loss

The following are commonly used OTC and prescription drugs that could damage patients’ hearing:  

  1. Aspirin

Aspirin-induced temporary hearing loss is normally associated with large doses, or 8 to 12 pills per day.

The effect is typically reversible once the patient reduces the frequency of their aspirin intake or stops taking the drug altogether.  

  1. Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)

NSAIDs like ibuprofen and naproxen have been linked with hearing issues.

NSAID pain relievers like ibuprofen can reduce blood flow to the cochlea [organ in the inner ear that helps hearing], which could impair its function

  1. Antibiotics

Patients who take aminoglycosides, the most commonly used class of antibiotics worldwide, risk a 20% to 60% chance of losing their hearing permanently.

Researchers are currently testing a modified version of an aminoglycoside that worked in mice without the adverse side effects of deafness or kidney damage.

  1. Chemotherapy Drugs

Certain chemotherapy drugs such as cisplatin, carboplatin or bleomycin have been associated with hearing loss.

the case of chemotherapy drugs is an instance where the perceived benefit of an ototoxic drug outweighs the risk of hearing loss

  1. Loop Diuretics

Damage from loop diuretics such as furosemide (Lasix) and bumetanide is caused by changes in the balance of fluids and salts of the inner ear, which can result in tissue swelling and issues with transmission of nerve signals.

While loop diuretic-induced hearing loss is normally temporary, the effect is more likely to be permanent when the medication is used in combination with other ototoxic drugs.

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