Korean researchers have found that osteoporosis increases the risk of a sudden sensorineural hearing loss by 40%.
Osteoporosis is a progressive condition in which bones become structurally weak and are more likely to fracture or break.
The Korean study analysed data from 68,241 patients aged at least 50 years with a diagnosis of osteoporosis between 2002 and 2013. The patients were identified through Korean Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service National Patient Sample data. Patients with osteoporosis were matched with a control group without osteoporosis.
Researchers assessed the diagnoses of sudden sensorineural hearing loss among both groups, including only those patients who underwent an auditory exam and were treated with steroids.
40% increased risk
The researchers found that 0.8% of those with osteoporosis and 0.5% of adults in the control group without the condition experienced sudden sensorineural hearing loss. This means that people with osteoporosis have a 40% increased risk of developing a sudden sensorineural hearing.
Risk increases with age
The researchers also observed that the risk of sudden sensorineural hearing loss in cases of osteoporosis increased with age. In subgroup analyses, researchers found that both men and women with osteoporosis aged 50 to 60 years were at greater risk for hearing loss. In adults aged at least 60 years and those aged at least 70 years, this risk persisted only in women.
Confirms earlier study
The study confirms an earlier study from Taiwan that also found a relationship between osteoporosis and sudden sensorineural hearing loss.
The study “Increased Risk of Sudden Sensory Neural Hearing Loss in Osteoporosis: A Longitudinal Follow-Up Study.” was published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.