Conductive Hearing Loss
Conductive hearing loss happens when much of the sound is lost before it has reached either the inner-ear's hair cells or the brain.
Conductive hearing loss occurs when sound is unable to pass through the middle ear and into the inner ear. This can be caused due to an obstruction or damage to the outer or middle ear and can be temporary or permanent, depending on the cause.
With this type of hearing loss, much of the sound is lost before it has time to reach even the hair cells or brain for processing.
Conductive hearing loss makes all sounds seem faint or muffled.
Congenital conductive hearing loss is identified through newborn hearing screening or if the baby has microtia or other facial abnormalities.
In adults, some of the symptoms include:
When conductive hearing loss is developed during childhood, it is usually due to otitis media with effusion. This may present with speech and language delay or difficulty hearing.
Later onset of conductive hearing loss may have an obvious cause such as an ear infection, trauma or upper respiratory tract infection.The causes can vary depending on the part of the ear is affected.
Depending on the severity and nature of the conductive loss, this type of hearing impairment can be treated with surgical intervention or medicine.
Hearing may be restored partially, but in some cases it can be restored fully, to within a normal hearing range.
Cases of permanent or chronic conductive hearing loss may require other treatment methods, such as hearing aid devices to improve detection of sound and speech perception.