Alexandria, Va — The American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) has just published a new Clinical Practice Guideline on Sudden Hearing Loss (SHL). This guideline is published as a supplement to the Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery journal

Current diagnosis and treatment plans vary greatly, says the AAO-HNSF press statement. The guideline provides evidence-based recommendations for the diagnosis, management, and follow-up of adults who present with SHL.

Prompt, accurate recognition and management of sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL), a subset of SHL, may improve hearing recovery and patient quality of life. AAO-HNSF also estimates that SSNHL affects five to 20 per 100,000 population, with about 4,000 new cases per year in the United States.

“The purpose of a new published guideline is to provide all clinicians who may encounter patients with SHL with evidence-based recommendations for diagnosis, counseling, treatment, and follow-up,” the press release stated. “By focusing on opportunities for quality improvement, the guideline should improve diagnostic accuracy, facilitate prompt intervention, decrease variations in management, reduce unnecessary tests and imaging procedures, and improve hearing and rehabilitative outcomes for affected patients.”

The SHL guideline’s authors are: Robert J. Stachler, MD; Sujana S. Chandrasekhar, MD; Sanford M. Archer, MD; Richard M. Rosenfeld, MD, MPH; Seth R. Schwartz, MD, MPH; David M. Barrs, MD; Steven R. Brown, MD; Terry D. Fife, MD; Peg Ford; Theodore G. Ganiats, MD; Deena B. Hollingsworth, RN, MSN, FNP; Christopher A. Lewandowski, MD; Joseph J. Montano, EdD; James E. Saunders, MD; Debara L. Tucci, MD, MS; Michael Valente, PhD; Barbara E. Warren, PsyD, MEd; Kathleen L. Yaremchuk, MD, MSA; Peter J. Robertson, MPA.

SOURCE: The American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation