Woman's rare condition means she can't hear men's voices

The diagnosis was a type of hearing loss which means she can't hear lower frequencies

The diagnosis was a type of hearing loss which means she can't hear lower frequencies

Since a woman's voice is usually high pitched than that of a man, Chen could only hear women.

Before she went to bed, the woman says she heard ringing in her ears and vomited. After thinking she could sleep it off, she awoke next to her boyfriend, unable to hear him.

According to doctor, Chen could hear everything but can't hear the voice of a young men patient who walked into the room.

"Sensorineural hearing loss" can result in a low frequency hearing loss - a type caused by inner ear hair cells getting damaged.

Dr. Xiaoqing reported Chen could hear her voice perfectly fine during the appointment, but she couldn't understand the voice of a male patient who was also at the hospital. Treatment can involve high doses of steroids, but sometimes the condition goes away without any treatment whatsoever, she added.

Ms Chen was diagnosed with reverse-slope hearing loss (or low-frequency hearing loss), a condition which is said to affect nearly one in 13,000 people with hearing problems. Hong Kong doctors have officially ruled that her loss of hearing is from "low-frequency hearing loss". It is believed that there are many people who now live with it, but because it is hard to diagnose, they may be unaware of it.

Dr. Xiaoqing said often stress, fatigue and sleep deprivation lead to such a condition.

While the condition may be caused by genetics, stress can also play a role.

If you haven't heard of it (and we hadn't either) it's called reverse-sloping hearing loss because of the shape of a hearing test audiogram of those who can't hear low frequencies - it looks the opposite of a ski slope, starting in the lower-left-hand corner and sloping upward steeply.

As news of the unusual case circulated, many social media users cracked jokes, with one person claiming it wasn't a condition, but simply evolution, while another enquired as to how they could contract it.

Chen said she'd been putting her body under a lot of pressure and not looking after herself recently.

Dr Xiaoqing says if symptoms are treated quickly, a full recovery can be made.

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