Sjögren's syndrome (SS) is a cell-mediated immune disorder primarily affecting the exocrine glands and hearing loss may be the first otological manifestation of this autoimmune disease. In order to assess the degree of sensorineural hearing loss in SS, 22 female patients were examined by means of standard audiometric tests (pure-tone audiometry, acoustic reflexes and impedance testing) and using distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs). The results indicated that only 36.3% of the patients had mild sensorineural hearing loss. Hearing level and distortion product threshold estimates were found to be significantly correlated. No relationship was found between the duration of the disease and the DPOAE and hearing threshold variables. The data suggest that SS may not directly cause sensorineural hearing loss.
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