A clinical study of cisplatin induced ototoxicity in head and neck malignancies


  • Gunjan Dwivedi Department of ENT and Head and Neck Surgery, Command Hospital (SC), Pune, Maharashtra, India
  • Manoj Kumar Department of ENT and Head and Neck Surgery, Command Hospital (SC), Pune, Maharashtra, India
  • Vikas Gupta Department of ENT and Head and Neck Surgery, Command Hospital (SC), Pune, Maharashtra, India
  • Amit Sood Department of ENT and Head and Neck Surgery, Command Hospital (SC), Pune, Maharashtra, India
  • Uma Patnaik Department of ENT and Head and Neck Surgery, Command Hospital (SC), Pune, Maharashtra, India




Ototoxicity, Head and neck cancers, Cisplatin, High frequency sensory neural hearing loss, Pure tone audiometry, Vestibulotoxicity, Tinnitus


Background: Head and neck malignancies are the sixth most common cancers worldwide, a vast majority of these cases is squamous cell carcinomas. Cisplatin is one of the main modalities of treatment. However it leads to dose dependent ototoxicity. The aim was to determine the cisplatin induced ototoxicity in head and neck squamous cell carcinomas. The objectives are: (1) to determine the severity and type of hearing loss; (2) to determine the effects on the vestibular system; (3) to correlate the cause effect relationship to dosage and duration of treatment; and (4) to devise a protocol for early detection and prevention of ototoxicity.

Methods: The study was conducted over 50 randomly selected head and neck cancer patients at malignat diseases treatment centre (MDTC) of a tertiary care centre in Eastern India at Command Hospital (EC), Kolkata between October 2008 and October 2010.  

Results: 22% of the patients developed cochlear ototoxicity. No patient had any vestibulotoxic effects.

Conclusions: Cisplatin manifests with dose dependent ototoxicity. Pre as well as post treatment audiometric monitoring may help to provide early evidence of decreased hearing ability, leading to the possible limitation of the severity of ototoxicity.


Author Biography

Gunjan Dwivedi, Department of ENT and Head and Neck Surgery, Command Hospital (SC), Pune, Maharashtra, India

Department of ENT and Head & Neck Surgery

Command Hospital (SC) Pune


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Original Research Articles