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Appendix I:C-1. Conductive Hearing Loss
conductive hearing loss audiogram - For problems with accessibility in using figures and illustrations, please contact the Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at (202) 693-2300.
Any condition in the outer or middle ear that interferes with sound passing to the inner ear is classified as a conductive hearing loss.
  • A conductive hearing loss can result from:
    • Excessive wax in the auditory canal.
    • A ruptured or heavily-scarred eardrum.
    • Fluid in the middle ear.
    • Dislocated or missing elements of the ossicular chain.
    • Eustachian tube blockage.
    • Otosclerosis (an abnormal growth of bone in the middle ear).
  • Work-related conductive hearing loss is not common, although it may occur occasionally as the result of accidents involving:
    • An eardrum rupture or a break in the ossicular chain by a head blow.
    • Explosions.
    • A rapid pressure change in a decompression chamber.
    • Penetration of the eardrum by a sharp object or fragment.
  • A significant number of conductive hearing losses are reversible through medical or surgical treatment.

For problems with accessibility in using figures and illustrations, please contact the Directorate of Technical Support and Emergency Management at (202) 693-2300.
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