Augmented gentamicin ototoxicity induced by vancomycin in guinea pigs

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990 Jan;116(1):61-4. doi: 10.1001/archotol.1990.01870010065019.


Vancomycin has been reported to be an ototoxic drug in the clinical literature. At best, this literature is confusing. There are no reports of ototoxicity of vancomycin in experimental animals, even when it is administered concurrently with ethacrynic acid, a drug known to augment the ototoxic effect of most other ototoxic drugs. In most of the cases of permanent ototoxicity that have been reported, the patient was treated with an aminoglycoside antibiotic as well as vancomycin. This study found no evidence of vancomycin ototoxicity in guinea pigs, but found that vancomycin greatly enhanced the ototoxicity of gentamicin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Action Potentials / drug effects
  • Animals
  • Cochlear Microphonic Potentials / drug effects
  • Drug Synergism
  • Ear, External / physiology
  • Gentamicins / blood
  • Gentamicins / toxicity*
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Hair Cells, Auditory / drug effects
  • Hearing Disorders / chemically induced*
  • Reflex / drug effects
  • Vancomycin / toxicity*


  • Gentamicins
  • Vancomycin