Acute sensorineural hearing loss and severe otalgia due to scrub typhus
1 Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, Chosun University, School of Medicine, Gwangju City, Republic of Korea
2 Department of Otorhinolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Chosun University, School of Medicine, Gwangju City, Republic of Korea
3 Research Center for Resistant Cell, Chosun University, School of Medicine, Gwangju City, Republic of Korea
BMC Infectious Diseases 2009, 9:173 doi:10.1186/1471-2334-9-173Published: 22 October 2009
Scrub typhus is an acute febrile illness caused by Orientia tsutsugamushi.
We encountered a patient with sensorineural hearing loss complicating scrub typhus, and three patients with scrub typhus who complained of otalgia, which was sudden onset, severe, paroxysmal, intermittent yet persistent pain lasting for several seconds, appeared within 1 week after the onset of fever and rash. The acute sensorineural hearing loss and otalgia were resolved after antibiotic administration.
When patients in endemic areas present with fever and rash and have sensorineural hearing loss or otalgia without otoscopic abnormalities, clinicians should suspect scrub typhus and consider empirical antibiotic therapy.