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Coronavirus Pandemic

Donations to fund research into long-term impact of COVID on hearing

A doctor inserting hearing aid to a patient's ear

University of Manchester audiology experts are now able to conduct a comprehensive investigation into the long-term impact of COVID19 on the hearing of adults.

Following the first peak of the COVID19 pandemic, experts have turned their attention to the long-term health consequences of the novel coronavirus.

Viruses can damage hearing, and so it is possible that the virus responsible for COVID19 may also have this effect. Kevin Munro, Professor of Audiology, and his team have already published two relevant studies displaying a possible link between COVID19 and hearing deterioration; both of which have attracted widespread media attention.

In one study, following up with adults diagnosed with COVID19 eight weeks after hospital discharge, more than 1 in 10 self-reported a deterioration in their hearing or the presence of tinnitus (noises in their ears).

“We already know that viruses such as measles, mumps and meningitis can cause hearing loss and coronaviruses can damage the nerves that carry information to and from the brain”, said Professor Munro. “It is possible, in theory, that Covid-19 could cause problems with parts of the auditory system including the middle ear or cochlea.”

Earlier this year, many supporters came together to donate towards The University of Manchester’s medical research response. As a result of donor generosity, the University has been able to establish a special research fund, which, along with generous contributions from charitable sources, will support Professor Kevin Munro’s crucial research investigating the impact of COVID19 on hearing.

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