Aminoglycosides (including gentamicin, amikacin, kanamycin, and tobramycin) are broad-spectrum antibiotics used for treating suspected or confirmed acute serious infections, and the long-term management of recurrent respiratory infections in cystic fibrosis and multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. They can however, like some other medications, cause a debilitating side effect known as ototoxicity - the permanent loss of hearing or balance. Estimates of the incidence of hearing loss after aminoglycoside treatment vary widely, due to differing dosing regimens and sensitivities of audiological tests.
Clinical indication and testing criteria
We offer a test prior to aminoglycoside therapy for individuals, and also for those who have been exposed to aminoglycosides in whom the target gene (MT-RNR1 1555A>G) status needs to be determined because of concern regarding hearing loss
- R67 Non-syndromic hearing loss should be used in individuals with unexplained hearing loss
For further information on this test (Test ID: R65.1), please refer to the National Genomic Test Directory for Rare Disease and the associated eligibility criteria.
Referrals for testing will be triaged by the Genomic Laboratory; testing should be targeted at those where a genetic or genomic diagnosis will guide management for the proband or family.