Ask the KD Experts: Kawasaki Disease and Hearing Loss
Our son was diagnosed with KD January 2007, he was 2 years 9 months old. After presenting with all the symptoms was treated with IVIG on the fifth day. The test came back normal and he was sent home two days later on low dose aspirin for next year.
Prior to KD, he had a hearing test that came back normal. After having Kawasaki and once he started talking more we noticed his speech was not very clear. Most of the time I (his mom) was the only one that could understand him. After asking pediatrician, he was sent for hearing and speak evaluation thru the University of Michigan. The hearing test revealed moderate-severe high-frequency sensorineural hearing loss in both ears. He now wears a hearing aide.
With that said have you had any cases similar to my sons? They did CT scan to see if any genetic reason and none could be found. I had read that, I believe in Japan, hearing loss was a side effect during KD episode, but would resolve once treated.
Six years post KD and four years post-hearing loss diagnoses. I still wonder if this is due to Kawasaki disease. In my gut it makes sense, but medical doctors can not say definitely.
Thank you for listening(reading this).
I am so sorry to hear about your son. Sensorineural hearing loss following KD is well-described and is directly related to the inflammation during the acute disease. It is not reversible once it happens and this can be devastating for families. One of our patients successfully underwent a cochlear implant to restore his hearing so you might inquire about that. I hope your son and your family are adjusting the hearing loss.
Jane C. Burns, M.D.
Professor and Director, Kawasaki Disease Research Center
Dept. of Pediatrics MC 0641
UCSD School of Medicine
9500 Gilman Dr.
La Jolla, CA 92093-0641