June 2009 - Edging Toward A Cure
For Hearing Loss And Deafness
March 2009 -
Scientists find hearing loss gene
December 2008 - Advances in hearing
research in 2008
November 2008 - Artificial
cochlea may help to recover hearing
August 2008 - Cochlea "Reprogramming"
and Artificial Cochlea Under Investigation
May 2007 - Auditory Nerve
Implant Next Big Hearing Loss Breakthrough?
2007 - Nutrients May
Prevent Noise Induced Hearing Loss
February 2007 - Genetic Hearing Loss
May Be Reversible Without Gene Therapy
September 2006 - Intratympanic
Steroids for Treatment of Sudden Hearing Loss
August 2006 - Protein Tied to Usher
Syndrome May Be Hearing's "Missing Link"
May 2006 - Aspirin Can
Prevent Hearing Loss from Ototoxic Medication
October 2005 - Steroids have been the treatment of
choice for sudden hearing loss for some time now. That treatment works
in some cases, but not in others. Scientists at the
University of Michigan may have figured out why that is, and figured out
how to predict who will benefit and who won't.
August 2005 - Researchers at the
University of Iowa have discovered how to prevent the expression of a
gene that causes hereditary deafness in mice!
February 2005 - I've heard
discussions of artificial cochlea for several years. Now the folks at
the University of Michigan have come up with one!
October 2004 - We're getting closer and closer to
understanding how sound vibrations cause an electrical signal to be sent
over the auditory nerve. The folks at Harvard Medical
recently reported a major discovery, the TRPA1 molecule. Here's their
October 2003 - What about acupuncture as a
hearing loss treatment. Read our readers' experiences
March 2001 - The vast majority of hearing problems are caused by a
cochlea that's not working as it should. More specifically, the problem
is generally caused by missing or damaged hair cells that don't properly
transmit the acoustic information to the acoustic nerve. One possibility
to address this situation is the development of an artificial
What if hearing healthcare professionals could do
more than fit hearing aids or warn patients about damaging noise levels?
What if there were other, even better, ways to protect and restore a
person's hearing, such as pills, injections, lasers, or a little "hair of
the dog"? That day is coming. Scientists in the United States and abroad
are exploring approaches to help more than 275 million people globally who
have hearing loss, from members of the military who sustain auditory
injury in combat to ordinary citizens who lose their hearing as a
consequence of aging, noise, disease, or ototoxic drug exposure.
Treatments are in the works for decreasing the relentless clamor of
tinnitus, rescuing hearing after noise exposure, reversing congenital
deafness, and staving off age-related hearing loss. Some alternative
therapies have already found a place in clinical care and may one day
become the standard of care.
Hearing loss can occur in people of all ages, from
newborns to the elderly. While the initial causes of hearing loss can be
diverse, including viral infections, genetic mutations and long-term
exposure to loud noise, in most cases, what ultimately occurs is damage to
or death of the cells located within the cochlea, the snail shaped portion
of the inner ear, resulting in hearing loss. . . . While both hearing aids
and cochlear implants often provide good recovery of hearing function, the
development of a biological method to induce the production, or
regeneration, of new hair cells has the potential to completely restore
normal hearing without any type of prosthesis.
I found this video fascinating, partially because
I had no idea that these sorts of procedures were even available. Parts of
the video are a bit graphic, but those who don't mind watching surgical
procedures will hopefully find this video as fascinating as I did.
Scientists believe a transplant of brain cells may
one day be able to reverse a common form of hearing loss. Damage to hair
cells in the inner ear due to ageing and overstimulation causes hearing
problems in 10% of people worldwide. The cell loss is irreversible, but
US scientists believe it may be possible to replace them with stem cells
from a region of the brain. The study appears in Proceedings of the
National Academy of Sciences. The key ependymal cells come from the
lining of the lateral ventricle of the brain. They share
characteristics with inner ear hair cells - but crucially, unlike them,
they have the ability to reproduce.