Q. I have sudden deafness, ringing, and loss of balance. Why?

Answered by
Dr. Deepthi. M
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 25, 2017

Hello doctor,

I am a 73 year old male. I have recently become progressively deaf in one ear. It took about six weeks during which it progressed through various stages of tinnitus, a hissing sound, heavily pulsed, becoming almost constant and some degree of loss of balance. The present situation is that I am completely deaf in the one ear except for a very slightly pulsed hissing sound, although the balance issue appears to have resolved itself. Also, when I press on the inner ear I hear a squelchy sound. I have been diagnosed as having a dead aural nerve. I understand that the hissing sound could be generated anywhere within the aural system but, the squelchy sound must be generated at the ear. So, how is that transmitted to the brain if the aural nerve is not functioning?



Welcome to

  • A unilateral sudden-onset hearing loss will be the result of exposure to cold weather, viral infection, allergy or autoimmune causes. You mentioned that an audiology test is done. Can I see the report?
  • Your symptoms were progressive deafness with various types of tinnitus. Tinnitus means a sound generated from within the nerve itself due to irritation or trauma to the nerve. Tinnitus occurs due to a faulty transmission of sound with its fibers. The phenomenon is just like how tingling and numbness occur in the hands and feet due to irritation of peripheral nerves.
  • If your ear is getting progressively deaf you need immediate treatment of your inner ear by medications (injections) given into your ear called intratympanic injections.
  • You have not given any treatment details. If you are not taking any treatment, please rush to a nearby ENT (ear, nose, and throat) specialist. Already you are late in starting a treatment. If there is further delay, the chances of a recovery go down.

For more information consult an ENT otolaryngologist online -->

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