The spinal cord is the bundle of nerves that carries messages between the brain and the rest of the body about sensation and movement. It is located in the canal in the center of your vertebrae. Below we provide an overview of spinal cord injuries as well as research about the link between this type of injury and hearing loss.
Overview of Spinal Cord Injuries
Here we provide an overview of spinal cord injuries.
What Causes Spinal Cord Injuries?
Spinal cord injuries can be caused by the following:
- Automobile accidents
- Sports injuries
- Diving accidents
- Trampoline accidents
- Abscesses on the spinal cord
- Birth injuries
- Violent injuries
What Are the Symptoms of Spinal Cord Injuries?
Spinal cord injuries can cause symptoms such as:
- Loss of feeling, muscle movement or reflexes
- Breathing problems
- Loss of bowel and bladder function
- Quadriplegia (loss of function in the arms and legs)
- Paraplegia (loss of function in the legs and lower body)
How Are Spinal Cord Injuries Treated?
Presently, there is no way to repair a damaged spinal cord. That said, surgery may be performed to evaluate the injuries, stabilize fractured bones, release pressure from the injury and manage other associated injuries. Other interventions include:
- Observation and management in the ICU
- Corticosteroids to decrease swelling
- Mechanical ventilator to help you breathe
- Bladder catheter to drain urine
- Feeding tube to provide nutrition and calories
What Does the Research Show?
According to a 2021 Taiwanese study, people who experience spinal cord injuries have a 1.75 times higher risk of developing sensorineural hearing loss than the general population.
The researchers found this by looking at data from Taiwan’s Longitudinal Health Insurance Database from 2005, which contained information that over 2,000 participants had experienced a spinal cord injury; over 8,000 people had not had such an injury and were part of the control group.
Over the course of the follow-up period, 30 patients who had a spinal cord injury and 87 who had not developed sensorineural hearing loss.
The study authors report, “Our study showed that patients with spinal cord injury have an increased risk of developing sensorineural hearing loss.” This means trouble hearing in a variety of environments, especially complex ones like Logan Street Restaurant & Bar, during happy hour.
To learn more about hearing loss treatment, such as hearing aids, or to schedule an appointment with an expert audiologist, call Advantage ENT & Audiology today.