Anesth Pain Med.  2016 Oct;11(4):359-361. 10.17085/apm.2016.11.4.359.

Unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss after combined spinal-epidural anesthesia for emergency cesarean section: A case report

  • 1Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Gangneung Asan Hospital, Gangneung, Korea.


A 30-year-old primigravida with gestational age of 25 weeks and 4 days was admitted for emergency cesarean section. She was diagnosed as pre-eclampsia with fetal distress. We anesthetized the patient through the combined spinal-epidural anesthetic technique, and there was no specific event throughout the surgical procedures and in post anesthetic care unit. Subsequently, she complained of unilateral hearing difficulty in the ward and an otolaryngology consultation was obtained. She was diagnosed with left sudden sensorineural hearing loss in full frequency range after an acoustic examination. She received intravenous and local steroid treatments for 4 weeks. She showed 32 dB on pure tone audiometry after 5 months. However, we could not continue follow-up testing on the patient because she stopped visiting the hospital since the last examination. We reported a case of uncommon unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss after a combined spinal-epidural anesthesia for emergency cesarean section.


Cesarean section; Combined spinal-epidural anesthesia; Hearing loss

MeSH Terms

Cesarean Section*
Fetal Distress
Follow-Up Studies
Gestational Age
Hearing Loss
Hearing Loss, Sensorineural*


1. Kang HS. Regional anesthesia for cesarean delivery. Anesth Pain Med. 2008; 3:1–7.
2. Wilson WR, Byl FM, Laird N. The efficacy of steroids in the treatment of idiopathic sudden hearing loss. A double-blind clinical study. Arch Otolaryngol. 1980; 106:772–6. DOI: 10.1001/archotol.1980.00790360050013. PMID: 7002129.
3. Yildiz TS, Solak M, Iseri M, Karaca B, Toker K. Hearing loss after spinal anesthesia: the effect of different infusion solutions. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2007; 137:79–82. DOI: 10.1016/j.otohns.2007.02.018. PMID: 17599570.
4. Karatas E, Göksu S, Durucu C, Isik Y, Kanlikama M. Evaluation of hearing loss after spinal anesthesia with otoacoustic emissions. Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol. 2006; 263:705–10. DOI: 10.1007/s00405-006-0049-3. PMID: 16680466.
5. Park SY, Han KR, Kim JS, Yoon C, Chae YJ, Kim C. Transient hearing loss following repeated total spinal anesthesias. J Korean Pain Soc. 2003; 16:282–5.
6. Finegold H, Mandell G, Vallejo M, Ramanathan S. Does spinal anesthesia cause hearing loss in the obstetric population? Anesth Analg. 2002; 95:198–203. DOI: 10.1097/00000539-200207000-00035. PMID: 12088968.
7. Lybecker H, Andersen T, Helbo-Hansen HS. The effect of epidural blood patch on hearing loss in patients with severe postdural puncture headache. J Clin Anesth. 1995; 7:457–64. DOI: 10.1016/0952-8180(95)90079-9.
8. Gültekin S, Ozcan S. Does hearing loss after spinal anesthesia differ between young and elderly patients? Anesth Analg. 2002; 94:1318–20. DOI: 10.1097/00000539-200205000-00050. PMID: 11973212.
9. Schaffartzik W, Hirsch J, Frickmann F, Kuhly P, Ernst A. Hearing loss after spinal and general anesthesia: a comparative study. Anesth Analg. 2000; 91:1466–72. DOI: 10.1097/00000539-200012000-00032. PMID: 11094002.
10. Traore M, Diallo A, Coulibaly Y, Guinto CO, Timbo SK, Thomas JT. Cauda equina syndrome and profound hearing loss after spinal anesthesia with isobaric bupivacaine. Anesth Analg. 2006; 102:1863–4. DOI: 10.1213/01.ane.0000216037.69269.60. PMID: 16717339.
11. Kiliçkan L, Gürkan Y, Ozkarakas H. Permanent sensorineural hearing loss following spinal anesthesia. Acta Anaesthesiol Scand. 2002; 46:1155–7. DOI: 10.1034/j.1399-6576.2002.460916.x. PMID: 12366513.
12. Fog J, Wang LP, Sundberg A, Mucchiano C. Hearing loss after spinal anesthesia is related to needle size. Anesth Analg. 1990; 70:517–22. DOI: 10.1213/00000539-199005000-00009. PMID: 2331068.
13. Hashim HZ, Salim R, Ali S, Mohamad I. Prevalence of reduced hearing post spinal anesthesia in young adult and elderly male patients. Asian Pac J Health Sci. 2014; 1:570–7.
14. Michel O, Brusis T. Hearing loss as a sequel of lumbar puncture. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 1992; 101:390–4. DOI: 10.1177/000348949210100503. PMID: 1570933.
Full Text Links
  • APM
export Copy
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
Similar articles
Copyright © 2024 by Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors. All rights reserved.     E-mail: