From the Department of Surgery, Division of Otolaryngology/Head Neck Surgery, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, CT.
1983 Eastern Section Triological Paper
Version of Record online: 5 JAN 2009
Copyright © 1983 The Triological Society
Volume 93, Issue 12, pages 1540–1543, December 1983
How to Cite
Dobbin, J. M. and Perkins, J. H. (1983), Otosyphilis and hearing loss: Response to penicillin and steroid therapy. The Laryngoscope, 93: 1540–1543. doi: 10.1288/00005537-198312000-00003
Presented at the Meeting of the Eastern Section of the American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc., New York, NY, January 28, 1983
- Issue online: 5 JAN 2009
- Version of Record online: 5 JAN 2009
Acquired and congenital syphilis are both known causes of potentially reversible sensorineural hearing loss. Various therapeutic regimens, including penicillin and/or corticosteroids have been used in the past as treatment for otosyphilis. Response rates have varied from 15% to 80%. In this retrospective study, 13 patients with otosyphilis were treated with a combined course of long-term penicillin and prednisone. A significant response was defined as a 15% improvement in the discrimination score and/or the pure tone average. Initial response rates were 35% with a lasting response rate of 15%. Discrimination scores improved more commonly than pure tone averages. No patient with congenital syphilis or profound deafness had a lasting response. An analysis of possible reasons for failure of therapy is discussed.