News & Events
November 25, 2014
Vitamin supplement slows hearing loss after antibiotics

A dietary supplement has been discovered to offer protection against the side effects of gentamicin treatment. The antioxidant vitamins prevent hearing damage by destroying the free radicals, which cause hearing loss, and protecting against their effect

Gentamicin is a drug used to treat people with bacterial infections that are resistant to other antibiotics, including penicillin. The drug is often used in developing countries, because it is cheap and easily accessible. Unfortunately, gentamicin has a serious side effect – it can lead to hearing loss. A vitamin enriched diet, however, can help prevent drug-induced hearing loss.

Previous research has shown that up to 25% of patients treated with gentamicin or other types of aminoglycoside antibiotics experience hearing loss. The current study investigates how to prevent drug-induced hearing loss. Researchers from the U.S. tested the use of dietary supplements containing the antioxidants beta carotene and vitamins C and E, as well as the mineral magnesium, for protecting against gentamicin-induced hearing loss.