As suitable practice guidelines have not yet been established for acute low-tone sensorineural hearing loss (ALHL), many doctors feel unsure about making a diagnosis based on their own methods for judgment. We administered questionnaire surveys on the conditions surrounding ALHL diagnoses to otolaryngologists in the Fukuoka area in Japan for the purpose of sharing medical practice-related information and to identify controversial issues. The results showed that suspected cases of ALHL had been treated as certain cases. During the year-long survey period, it was also estimated that about 50% of the total diagnosed patients completed treatment within 2 months, about 30% continued treatment for 2 months or more, and about 20% elected to discontinue treatment. For the treatment drug, isosorbide was used less frequently than steroids. When making a diagnosis, doctors did not limit themselves to diagnostic criteria, and aggressively tried to treat symptoms as ALHL when that was the suspected diagnosis. As criteria for determining the end of treatment, the survey results showed that treatment was sometimes concluded despite instability in either subjective symptoms or hearing impairment, and that it was sometimes concluded based on the patient's wishes. Half of the patients referred from another hospital did not have actual written referrals, and some patients dropped out of treatment on their own accord, suggesting that some patients were concerned about the course of ALHL.
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