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November 1981

Hearing Loss After Therapy With Radiation

Am J Dis Child. 1981;135(11):1066-1067. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1981.02130350066021

Hearing loss has been noted as a complication of cranial irradiation in adults,1-7 but to our knowledge has not previously been described in children.8 We studied a preadolescent child in whom moderate to severe hearing loss developed after radiation therapy.

Report of a Case.—A 12-year-old girl had been in good health until 5 years of age, when she had begun to experience recurrent headaches. At age 6½ years, papilledema developed; skull roentgenograms showed a partially calcified suprasellar mass. She underwent subtotal resection of an optic glioma, and received postoperative radiation, 5,000 rad total tumor dose, in 25 fractions over five weeks. The radiation field included the petrous portion of both temporal bones. Examination immediately after therapy revealed alopecia in the left temporal region, and desquamation behind both pinnae. Over the following three months, headaches again developed that were treated with aspirin, 80 to 100 mg/kg/day. When