Hearing loss

I have stage 3 bowel cancer.  The operation to remove the tumour was successful and I am about to start chemotherapy using the Folfox regime.

The doctor has explained one possible side effect is hearing loss.  I am trying to understand the size of this risk.

 I am in my 70s and use hearing aids.  I have recently got new hearing aids and they have improved my hearing and therefore life, considerably.  I would like to prepare myself for this possible side effect but can find little information on the magnitude of the risk

  • Hello Sekona and thanks for your post

    I am sorry to hear about your situation and that you are about to start chemotherapy.

    I can appreciate your concerns about the side effects of treatment but i'm afraid it is difficult to predict how any one person will be. Whilst hearing can be affected by Folfox treatment not all patients will experience this.

    There is information about Folfox and the various possible side effects on our website.

    If and when the hearing is affected there can be varying degrees with some noticing some ringing in the ears,(tinnitus) to others losing the ability to hear high pitched sounds. Like with all side effects these can settle with time and go away completely and with others it may improve slightly but not go away completely.

    Like with all side effects it is important to let the doctors and nurses involved in your care know about any side effects you experience so they can best manage these for you.

    I am sorry we cannot be more specific on this occasion. Do also ask your team about this, in case they can give a more precise answer to this question.

    Please get back to us if you need any more information or support.  You may find it helpful to talk things through with one of the nurses on our helpline.  The number to call is Freephone 0808 800 4040 and the lines are open from 9am till 5pm Monday to Friday.

    Best wishes