The COVID-19 vaccine is safe and can be used in children with unilateral hearing loss, according to findings published in the American Journal of Otolaryngology. Giovanna Cantarella, MD, and colleagues examined possible complications of COVID-19 infection or the COVID-19 vaccine in 272 children aged 5-11 (mean age, 7.8), including 120 with pre-existing unilateral hearing loss. The most common audio-vestibular symptoms after COVID-19
infection and vaccination were aural fullness (25%) and dizziness (3.6%), respectively. All symptoms that occurred after vaccination resolved within 24 hours. Compared with children who received the vaccine, those with COVID-19 had a higher prevalence of tinnitus (P=0.009), hyperacusis (P=0.003), aural fullness (P<0.001), otalgia (P<0.001), otorrhea (P<0.001), and vertigo (P=0.006). Two children experienced new-onset unilateral sensorineural hearing loss following COVID-19 infection. Children with a history of unilateral hearing loss
did not experience an increased rate of audio vestibular symptoms.