Thursday, 24 January, 2019

Bizarre Ear Condition Makes Woman Unable to Hear Men's Voices

Woman Can't Hear Her Boyfriend's Voice Because Of A Rare Condition. Credit AsiaWire Woman Can't Hear Her Boyfriend's Voice Because Of A Rare Condition. Credit AsiaWire
Celia Hoffman | 11 January, 2019, 23:22

That is what happened to a woman called Chen from Xiamen, a port city on the southeast coast of China, according to The Daily Mail.

"She was able to hear me when I spoke to her", Lin Xiaoqing, MD, the ear, nose, and throat specialist who treated Chen told the Daily Mail.

Chen could no longer hear low frequencies, including her boyfriend, and other males', speaking voices.

But Dr Xiaoqing said Chen may have developed the condition duo to fatigue and stress after Chen said she'd been getting stressed and losing sleep over working too much.

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Xiaoqing diagnosed Chen with "low-frequency hearing loss", a rare condition that cuts off deeper, lower-frequency sounds. In Chen's case, RSHL was preceded by an extremely stressful period - which her doctor says may have contributed. That is just one in every 12,000 incidents of hearing loss. In this condition, the plot of the audiogram runs from the upper-left-hand corner of the graph and travels downwards like a ski-slope.

Reverse-slope hearing loss (RSHL) gets its name from the shape it produces in visualizations of hearing tests - a slope that is a mirror image of the incline produced by high-frequency hearing loss, according to audiology clinic Audiology HEARS, P.C. Autoimmune disorders that affect the inner ear - which are thought to occur in about 1 percent of the USA population - may also be a cause of RSHL, Clark said.

As well as struggling to hear low-frequency voices, those with the condition can find it tough to make out voices on the phone, as well as noises like the hum of the fridge or thunder. It can also be caused by changes in the pressure of the fluid in the inner ear, endolymph, which itself can be the result of spinal or general anesthesia, intracranial hypertension, and a perilymphatic fistula. By 2050, that figure is expected to hit over 900 million.

Reverse-slope hearing loss caused a Chinese woman to only hear female voices. Sudden hearing loss, Ménière's disease and viral infection are also identified as causes of RSHL.

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