Emergency Care

Find out what's causing your hearing loss

Sudden hearing loss happens over 72 hours or less. The medical name for this is sensorineural hearing loss (SSHL). Its severity can vary from person to person, but it usually only affects one ear.

If you have sudden hearing loss in Goshen, IN, or a surrounding area, call 911 or seek emergency care at Goshen Hospital Emergency Department on High Park Avenue. With high-tech exam rooms, portable imaging equipment and leading-edge technologies, we are prepared to treat this quick onset symptom with the most advanced care available.

Symptoms related to sensorineural hearing loss

When you come to our emergency room, tell your doctor or nurse any symptoms that occur with your sudden hearing loss.

These symptoms may include:

  • Confusion, disorientation or difficulty understanding speech
  • Sudden vision changes
  • Dizziness or vertigo
  • Loud popping noise in the ear before losing hearing
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Severe headache
  • Slurred or garbled speech, or inability to speak
  • Weakness on one side of the body or face

Some of these symptoms indicate a life-threatening condition, including stroke, so call 911 or go to your nearest ER right away.

Emergency care for the causes of hearing loss

SSHL tends to strike adults in their 40s and 50s. In up to 90 percent of cases, the specific cause is unknown. If that’s the case, it’s called idiopathic SSHL.

However, there can be serious underlying causes of hearing loss or SSHL, including:

  • Head injury and other trauma
  • Infections
  • Stroke and other neurologic conditions
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Inner ear disorders, such as Meniere’s disease
  • Ototoxic drugs, which are medications that can damage the inner ear
  • Cancerous or benign tumors

Our board certified emergency physicians and nurses collaborate to quickly diagnose the condition and provide emergency care that’s right for your unique needs.

We will also refer you to an ear, nose and throat (ENT) doctor for additional care. Half of people with idiopathic SSHL recover some or all of their hearing in a couple of weeks. This increases to about 85 percent for people who work with an ENT. Trust us to put your well-being first and help you get the care you need.

Goshen Hospital Emergency Department serves Elkhart County by diagnosing what causes hearing loss in Goshen, IN.