Many of the symptoms caused by SCDS can be similar to those of other syndromes. As such, it is important to get a proper diagnosis from a specialist in order to rule out other possible causes.
A diagnosis usually involves having your family doctor/general practitioner refer you to an ENT (ear/nose/throat) doctor that specializes in Otology or Neurotology for a hearing assessment.
Typically, an ENT specialist will perform an audiogram hearing test and a VEMP test. If a dehiscence is suspected from the results, a CT scan may be required as well.
SCDS Diagnosis Criteria
The proposed SCDS diagnosis criteria includes:
At least 1 of the following symptoms consistent with a dehiscence:
- Bone conduction hyperacusis, such as:
- hearing one’s voice loudly or distorted in the affected ear (autophony)
- abnormal perception of one’s own internal body sounds, like hearing loudly one’s eye movements or heartbeat
- Sound or pressure-induced vertigo (Tullio phenomenon) and/or oscillopsia (sensation that world is moving/bouncing)
- Pulsatile tinnitus (hearing your blood flow in your ear)
And at least 1 of the following signs or diagnostic tests indicating a dehiscence within the inner ear:
- Rhythmic/uncontrollable eye movement caused by sound or pressure changes
- VEMP test results indicating low cVEMP thresholds or high oVEMP amplitudes
Plus a high-resolution CT scan demonstrating dehiscence of the superior canal.
And finally, the symptoms are not better accounted for by another vestibular disease or disorder.