Hearing loss while on prednisilone: I have just... - PMRGCAuk


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Hearing loss while on prednisilone

humlies profile image

I have just been reading some posts that mention hearing loss. After 9 months on pred. I have a marked hearing loss. Is this common? Is the PMR or the pred.?? I wonder why it happens, and how common it is for hearing to improve when on a lower dose.

20 Replies
PMRpro profile image

Are you sure it is the pred and not the autoimmune condition? It is known that hearing loss can be part of GCA and is seen sometimes in PMR - possibly because the patient has LVV and the blood flow to the 8th cranial nerve is reduced as a result.

PMRGCA NE funded the primary research that led to this NHS-funded study:


humlies profile image
humlies in reply to PMRpro

I have no idea! My ears have no wax, and though there is some possibility that I have LVV, that can't be checked until I am on 5 mg. pred. Thank you for your help, and for the link.

Jinasc shares a useful medical article about this lesser known effect of GCA. I hope she can share it again, in case it has some relevance in your case.Presumably, you have already sought medical advice? If not, please do. You may find it included in the threads, to the right of your screen, that discuss hearing loss.

PMRpro profile image
PMRproAmbassador in reply to SheffieldJane

It is in my reply above.

SheffieldJane profile image
SheffieldJane in reply to PMRpro

I was a minute behind you, good morning. 🌼

PMRpro profile image
PMRproAmbassador in reply to SheffieldJane

Morning ;)

Yes, thank you for this. The doctor checked my ears for wax and remarkably there was none. Maybe I now know why! I will check the threads as you suggest.

Firstly have you had your ears looked at, to check for wax and fluid behind the ear drum? I’ve never had excess ear wax until I went on Pred and it was worst below 10mg when allergy type symptoms kicked in. In the end after lots of oiling I had to have them irrigated. Both can cause tinnitus and hearing loss. About 18 months to diagnosis with GCA I had sudden hearing impairment that was seen on testing but not considered enough to warrant further investigation. It is thought now that the 8th cranial nerve can be damaged due to vasculitis in the head area with GCA.

Before my PMR diagnosis I had a long run of severe ear infections, bad enough to swell and close my whole ear. I now wonder if this was the forerunner to everything (Vasculitis) that has followed. Since Pred my ears have normalised and resumed producing ear wax. I do experience slight tinnitus occasionally. I also have a narrowed throat, chronic phlegm and my nose is often blocked. This is only ever treated in the acute by my GPs and no link is made with my autoimmune diseases or medication. My son is convinced that none of us breathe properly and has given me the book Breath by James Nestor. I am finding it fascinating and am trying to breathe in a healthier way.

Many thanks again, Sheffield Jane. I also have COPD so am interested in anything that helps with good breathing.

humlies profile image
humlies in reply to SnazzyD

Thank you so much for your reply. I will remember the 8th cranial nerve, and will ask the rheumatologist - if I ever see her again!

SnazzyD profile image
SnazzyD in reply to humlies

When I mentioned it once, the doc at the time gave a vaguely interested response but making sure I wasn’t too encouraged as to pursue it further with them.

humlies profile image
humlies in reply to SnazzyD

I must remember the 8th cranial nerve. Thank you again; it is amazing to find this wealth of information on the forum.

Hello. My gradual hearing loss over time - many years - was due to Crohns - another autoimmune condition. When I had sudden bi lateral hearing loss, it turned out to be caused by an underlying autoimmune condition. I suspect it was my first GCA symptom, as at the time the Crohns was fully under control.

The Prednisolone was never in question.

The things we have to put up with. Never ending!!

humlies profile image
humlies in reply to Songbird69

Thank you, Songbird. At least I can hear all the lovely songbirds in our garden - at this time of year it is amazing, (even if they are probably all swearing at each other!)

I am down to 1 mg and never had GCA but definitely hear a lot less.

humlies profile image
humlies in reply to whitefishbay

Yes, interesting. I suppose some would say it was coincidental - others say "what do you expect at your age". (This may apply to me but maybe not to you!)

64 def applies to me. 😩

humlies profile image
humlies in reply to whitefishbay

Ah - you are a little bit older than the lovely cameo that you have. I am 78 so definitely on the old side, though even with all this I still feel inside that I am about 50....

In my tiny mind, I am 36 but if I look in the mirror the illusion is shattered or when I walk (feet hurt). You just have to keep going.

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