St. Luke's Hospital
Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
Find a Physician Payment Options Locations & Directions
Follow us on: facebook twitter Mobile Email Page Email Page Print Page Print Page Increase Font Size Decrease Font Size Font Size
America's 50 Best Hospitals
Meet the Doctor
Spirit of Women
Community Health Needs Assessment
Home > Health Information

Multimedia Encyclopedia

    Print-Friendly
    Bookmarks

    Otosclerosis

    Otospongiosis; Stapedectomy

    Otosclerosis is an abnormal bone growth in the middle ear that causes hearing loss.

    Causes

    The cause of otosclerosis is unknown. However, there is some evidence that it may be passed down through families.

    People who have otosclerosis have an abnormal sponge-like bone growing in the middle ear. This growth prevents the ear bones from vibrating in response to sound waves. Such vibrations are needed in order for you to hear.

    Otosclerosis is the most common cause of middle ear hearing loss in young adults. It typically begins in early to mid-adulthood. It is more common in women than in men. The condition may affect one or both ears.

    Risks for this condition include pregnancy and a family history of hearing loss. Caucasians are more likely to develop this condition than people of other races.

    Symptoms

    • Hearing loss (slow at first, but gets worse over time)
    • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
    • Vertigo or dizziness

    Exams and Tests

    A hearing test (audiometry /audiology) may help determine the severity of hearing loss.

    A special imaging test of the head called a temporal-bone CT may be used to look for other causes of hearing loss.

    Treatment

    Otosclerosis may slowly get worse. The condition may not need to be treated until you havesignificant hearing problems.

    Medications such as fluoride, calcium, or vitamin D may help to slow the hearing loss, but the benefits have not yet been proved.

    A hearing aid may be used to treat the hearing loss. This will not cure or prevent hearing loss from getting worse, but it may help relieve some of the symptoms.

    Surgery to remove part of the ear (stapes) and replace it with a prosthesis can cure conductive hearing loss. A total replacement is called a stapedectomy. Sometimes only part of the stapes is removed and a small hole is made in the bottom of it. This is called a stapedotomy. Sometimes a laser is used to help with the surgery.

    Outlook (Prognosis)

    Otosclerosis gets worse without treatment. Surgery may restore at least some of your hearing. Pain and dizziness from the surgery usually go away within a few weeks.

    To reduce the risk of complications after surgery:

    • Do not blow your nose for 2 -3 weeks after surgery.
    • Avoid people with respiratory or other infections.
    • Avoid bending, lifting, or straining, which may cause dizziness.
    • Avoid loud noises or sudden pressure changes, such as scuba diving, flying, or driving in the mountains until you have healed.

    If surgery does not work, you may have total hearing loss. Treatment then involves developing skills to cope with deafness, and using hearing aidsto transmit sounds from the non-hearing earto the good ear.

    Possible Complications

    • Complete deafness
    • Funny taste in the mouth
    • Infection, dizziness, pain, or a blood clot in the ear after surgery
    • Nerve damage

    When to Contact a Medical Professional

    Call your health care provider if:

    • You havehearing loss
    • You develop fever, ear pain, dizziness, or other symptoms after surgery

    References

    House JW, Cunningham CD III. Otosclerosis. In: Cummings CW, Flint PW, Haughey BH, et al, eds. Otolaryngology: Head & Neck Surgery. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2010:chap 144.

    O'Handley JG, Tobin EJ, Shah AR. Otorhinolaryngology. In: Rakel RE, ed. Textbook of Family Medicine. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2011:chap 19.

    BACK TO TOP

    • Ear anatomy

      illustration

      • Ear anatomy

        illustration

      Tests for Otosclerosis

        Review Date: 8/30/2012

        Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington; Seth Schwartz, MD, MPH, Otolaryngologist, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc.

        The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
        adam.com

        A.D.A.M. content is best viewed in IE9 or above, Fire Fox and chrome browser.


        Back  |  Top
        About Us
        Contact Us
        History
        Mission
        Locations & Directions
        Quality Reports
        Annual Reports
        Honors & Awards
        Community Health Needs
        Assessment

        Newsroom
        Services
        Brain & Spine
        Cancer
        Heart
        Maternity
        Orthopedics
        Pulmonary
        Sleep Medicine
        Urgent Care
        Women's Services
        All Services
        Patients & Visitors
        Locations & Directions
        Find a Physician
        Tour St. Luke's
        Patient & Visitor Information
        Contact Us
        Payment Options
        Financial Assistance
        Send a Card
        Mammogram Appointments
        Health Tools
        My Personal Health
        mystlukes
        Spirit of Women
        Health Information & Tools
        Clinical Trials
        Health Risk Assessments
        Employer Programs -
        Passport to Wellness

        Classes & Events
        Classes & Events
        Spirit of Women
        Donate & Volunteer
        Giving Opportunities
        Volunteer
        Physicians & Employees
        For Physicians
        Remote Access
        Medical Residency Information
        Pharmacy Residency Information
        Physician CPOE Training
        Careers
        Careers
        St. Luke's Hospital - 232 South Woods Mill Road - Chesterfield, MO 63017 Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
        Copyright © St. Luke's Hospital Website Terms and Conditions  |  Privacy Policy  |  Patient Notice of Privacy Policies PDF Sitemap St. Luke's Mobile