Published: 2021-07-27

A review on hearing loss caused by occupational hazard and trauma

Dyana Lekha Selvanayagam, Amuthaganesh Mathialagan


Occupational hearing loss (OHL) is known to be one of the most common occupational diseases. Common causes are being exposed to workplace hazardous noise levels, ototoxic chemicals, head injuries and barotrauma. Occupational noise-induced hearing loss is mostly due to the death or damage of hair cells in our ear, which do not grow back. On the other hand, ototoxic chemicals affect the structures in cochlear and auditory neurological pathways leading to hearing loss. In occupational head trauma, the parts of the ear that are damaged are the tympanic membrane, middle ear and cochlea which leads to hearing disability. Huge changes in pressure on the outside and the inside of the ear leads to barotrauma causing potential hearing loss. Many of the research available are regarding noise-induced OHL or chemicals causing OHL followed by barotrauma. More studies on OHL due to workplace head trauma should be conducted. Preventative measures should be taken by the worker’s supervisors or the government to implement safety measures to prevent and reduce OHL. This can be done via providing equipment and facilities that prevent hearing loss and education on OHL.


Hearing loss, Occupational hearing loss, Noise induced hearing loss, Chemically induced hearing loss, Head trauma induced hearing loss, Barotrauma induced hearing loss

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