Alcoholism: effects on the cochleo-vestibular apparatus

Several ototoxic drugs are harmful to the human being and lead to problems such as tinnitus, many types of hearing loss, and vertigo. Alcohol is among the main agents considered ototoxic. AIM: To study the effects of alcoholism in the vestibular-cochlear system. STUDY DESIGN: cross-sectional contemporary cohort. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The sample comprehended 37 individuals in the Experimental Group, members of Alcoholics Anonymous of the City Santa Maria-RS, and 37 non-alcoholic individuals in the Control Group, age and gender matching. All of the individuals examined were submitted to anamnesis, otorhinolaryngological examination, basic hearing evaluation, and vecto-electronystamography. RESULTS: 67.57% of the individuals from the Experimental Group showed abnormalities in the audiometry and 24.32% presented abnormalities in the computerized vecto-electronystamography. In the Control Group, 27.03% of the individuals showed abnormalities in the audiometry and 10.81% presented abnormalities in the computerized vecto-electronystamography. CONCLUSION: Alcohol interferes on an individual’s hearing and balance, causing deleterious effects on the human organism.

alcohol


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