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Did You Know…

People With Kidney Disease Are More Likely To Have Hearing Loss?

About 37 million adults in the United States are estimated to have chronic kidney disease, also known as CKD. CKD is a condition that causes a progressive loss of kidney function over time, and unfortunately, because those with early CKD often do not experience any symptoms or feel ill, most of those 37 million Americans are unaware they have this condition.

CKD tends to worsen over time, potentially causing kidney failure, dialysis, and the need for a kidney transplant. In addition, researchers have also noticed a connection between CKD and hearing loss.

Recent studies have found that people with CKD are twice as likely to suffer from some degree of hearing loss as the general population, and three times as likely to suffer from severe hearing loss.

There are a few potential explanations for this link between CKD and hearing loss. First, the same health conditions that often accompany CKD, like diabetes and heart disease, can also lead to hearing loss.

Additionally, the inner ear and kidneys are surprisingly similar structurally and functionally. In fact, there are several congenital disorders (or disorders that are present from birth) that can cause both ear and kidney malformations due to these similarities.

Lastly, CKD itself can cause poor circulation and damage to the small blood vessels in the inner ear, which will ultimately lead to hearing loss.

If you or a loved one have kidney disease, it’s important to be aware of the potential for hearing loss and to get regular hearing screenings. Make an appointment with the audiology experts at Hearing Unlimited to get started.

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Kidney disease, Hearing Loss & You

How Kidney Disease Can Lead to Other Medical Issues

A person with chronic kidney disease will have damaged kidneys that cannot filter blood effectively. As a result of this, bodily fluids and waste from blood will accumulate in their body, which can lead to a number of health complications.

This effect on their blood will quickly have an effect on their ears. The inner ear is very sensitive to changes in blood supply and oxygenation, requiring proper circulation to function properly. Any reduction in this supply or its quality will quickly result in damage to the inner ear, and ultimately, hearing loss.

In addition, the same health conditions that often accompany CKD, like diabetes and heart disease, also put a strain on the body’s cardiovascular system, making it difficult for blood to circulate properly and reach the inner ear.

If you have kidney disease, it is important to get your hearing checked regularly as part of your overall health care routine, either at one of Hearing Unlimited's Pittsburgh audiology centers or through our online tool.

Hearing loss tends to happen gradually over an elongated period of time, making it difficult to detect on your own. For that reason, regular comprehensive hearing evaluations are crucial to your hearing health.

Evidence-Based Solutions

Address Your Hearing Loss with Hearing Aids

If you have kidney disease and are experiencing hearing loss, it's time to contact the experts at Hearing Unlimited. After testing your hearing, our experts will be able to help determine the type of hearing loss you are experiencing, as well as how severe your hearing loss is. That will allow us to provide you with the best, most effective treatment solutions available.

Hearing aids are one such solution, and with today’s technology, they are more effective and user-friendly than ever before. We carry a wide variety of hearing aid styles and brands, including those that can work with your iPhone or Android, so you’ll be sure to find one that meets your needs.

Plus, with our no-obligation 7 Day Test Drive, you'll be able to test out a professionally-fitted hearing aid that has been customized to address your specific hearing loss. Our program allows you to go through your daily activities and see how your hearing aids will be able to help you think faster, focus better, and remember more of what you hear!

If you have kidney disease and think you may be experiencing hearing loss, don’t wait to get help. The audiologists at Hearing Unlimited are dedicated to working with you to find the best hearing solution for your specific needs and lifestyle.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can kidney problems cause ear problems?

Simply put, yes. Chronic kidney disease can lead to a number of health complications, one of which is hearing loss.

There are a few reasons for this, but it largely comes down to how CKD affects the blood and how the blood affects the inner ear. When the kidneys are damaged, as they are with CKD, they are less effective at removing waste and toxins from the bloodstream.

The inner ear is very sensitive to changes in blood supply and oxygenation, requiring proper circulation to function properly. With CKD, these factors are all affected, which can ultimately lead to hearing loss.

Is there anything I can do to prevent chronic kidney disease?

There is no sure way to prevent CKD, but there are some things you can do to lower your risk of this condition.

If you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or a family history of kidney disease, it’s important to get checked regularly by your primary care physician, as these are all risk factors for CKD.

In addition, eating a healthy diet and maintaining a healthy weight can also help lower your risk of developing this condition. Exercising regularly, not smoking, and limiting your alcohol intake are also good preventive measures.

What hearing loss treatments due to diabetes are available to me?

Once you've undergone a hearing evaluation to determine the type and severity of your hearing loss, our hearing aid specialists can help you find the best solution for your needs.

We have hearing aid centers throughout Western Pennsylvania and the Pittsburgh area, including in Monroeville, Penn Hills, South Hills, Harmarville, and North Huntington. In addition, for those who struggle with limited mobility or otherwise cannot make it to us, we also offer house calls

How do I get started with the best audiologist near me?

We're glad you asked! The first step is to schedule a hearing evaluation with one of our expert audiologists, either by phone or through our website. We'll be happy to answer any questions you have and get you set up with an appointment that's convenient for you!