December 4, 2000
Question from Londonderry, Northern Ireland, UK:
I am looking for information about any connection between type�2 diabetes and loss of hearing.
Diabetes, by itself, does not cause hearing loss. However, it is associated with a predisposition to malignant otitis externa, a severe form of outer ear infection. If these infections occur, they have the ability to cause scarring and narrowing of the external auditory canal, the portion of the ear the conducts the sound into the middle and inner ear. Your doctor can usually examine your ears and see if you have had this type of infection in the past.