Diabetes triggers hearing impairment: Study

Other conditions that damage of the auditory system has been associated with are social isolation and depression, cognitive decline and incident dementia, a higher propensity for falls and hospitalisations, and increased mortality.

Updated: Apr 25, 2016, 21:10 PM IST

Zee Media Bureau

New York: Diabetes is considered by many health professionals as a silent killer. Doctors have always emphasised on the fact that diabetes can trigger the onset of many other health conditions, if not brought under control on time.

Now, in another revelation, a study has found that the disease can also cause hearing impairment.

"An association between diabetes and hearing impairment in human subjects has been shown in many, but not all, studies. Direct comparison of these studies is complicated due to a lack of consistency in defining hearing impairment and other factors," said one of the researchers Elizabeth Helzner, assistant professor at SUNY Downstate Medical Centre in New York.

"However, the association between diabetes and hearing impairment tends to be stronger in studies that included younger participants, perhaps because in older samples, other causes of age-related hearing impairment may mask the contribution of diabetes to the impairment,” Helzner noted.

"This factor in itself lends weight to the notion that Type-2 diabetes can damage hearing," Helzner explained.

The researchers, however, added that well-designed longitudinal studies are necessary in order to explore whether patients with diabetes are at increased risk of early-onset hearing impairment, and whether the progression of hearing impairment varies based on diabetes status, as well as disease management factors, after taking other known contributors to hearing sensitivity into account.

Other conditions that damage of the auditory system has been associated with are social isolation and depression, cognitive decline and incident dementia, a higher propensity for falls and hospitalisations, and increased mortality.

The stidy was published in in the journal Current Diabetes Reports.

(With IANS inputs)