Most often, when we think of the causes of hearing loss, we think of aging or noise-induced hearing loss. But as researchers begin to delve further into the issue, findings suggest that hearing loss can be attributed to more than just age or exposure to damaging sound levels. Significant health issues, like heart disease or diabetes, have already received attention for potentially causing hearing loss, but more recently, chronic kidney disease (CKD) has been recognized as a potential cause.
What is Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)?
Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is, essentially, the diminished function of one's kidneys over time. When a person’s kidneys fail to function properly, the body cannot fully eliminate its toxins. As a result, these toxins begin to build in a person’s blood and cause other health problems, which include anemia, weak bones, and nerve damage. In turn, these issues can result in larger health concerns, like heart disease.
Over 30 million people have been diagnosed with kidney disease, and with more and more people suffering from diabetes and systemic hypertension, noted causes of CKD, the number of people diagnosed with CKD is only expected to rise.
Does CKD Really Cause Hearing Loss?
The potential link between CKD and hearing loss became more widely recognized after a community-based study was published in 2010 by the American Journal of Kidney Diseases. The researchers evaluated 2,564 patients over the age of 50, 513 of whom had CKD. Findings revealed a significant association between CKD and hearing loss. In fact, about of 54% of patients with CKD were diagnosed with hearing loss, while only 28% of patients without CKD had hearing loss.
A more recent study was published by the Australasian Medical Journal in 2015. This study was conducted on a smaller population of only 120 patients with CKD; however, the findings were similar. The researchers found that 41.7% of the patients experienced hearing loss. While a majority of the patients were found to have only mild hearing loss, the researchers still concluded that CKD is likely a cause of hearing loss.
Although research has explored the connection between CKD and hearing loss, little research has been conducted on why CKD causes hearing loss. Some suggest that the nerve damage caused by CKD could result in damage to the ears, thusly causing hearing loss in individuals suffering from the disease.
What Can I Do About Hearing Loss from CKD?
As illustrated by existing research, individuals with CKD are at a higher risk for developing hearing loss. If you have CKD and suspect that your hearing has been impacted, take our Online Hearing Check. From there, you should be able to determine if you would benefit from purchasing hearing aids.
Since 1996, Advanced Affordable Hearing has offered new and refurbished hearing aids to its customers for a reasonable price. By sending hearing aids straight to your door, we save can save you thousands of dollars. If you want to know more about how we can help, contact us now.
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