Follow-up of childhood hearing disorders: hearing loss, tinnitus and dizziness in adulthood. A population-based cohort study
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AbstractThis project aimed to assess the associations between various hearing disorders in childhood and hearing loss, tinnitus and dizziness in adulthood. Especially, we examined childhood otitis media and childhood sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL). Knowledge about these long-term outcomes is scarce, and important when considering level of intervention and for patient information. The data were obtained from a population-based cohort study of 32,786 adults (aged 20-59 years, mean 40 years) who underwent puretone audiometry and completed a health questionnaire in the Nord-Trøndelag Hearing loss study (1996-1998). As children, the same persons underwent audiometry in a longitudinal school hearing investigation (at 7, 10 and 13 years of age). Children found with hearing loss underwent an ear, nose and throat specialist examination (3066 children), in which they were diagnosed with various hearing disorders. In conclusion, our study indicates that childhood chronic suppurative otitis media (CSOM) and childhood hearing loss after recurrent acute otitis media (rAOM) are associated with significant hearing loss, tinnitus and dizziness in adulthood. This stresses the importance of appropriate prevention, treatment and follow-up of these otitis media conditions. The common condition childhood otitis media with effusion, both with and without eardrum pathology, is associated with marginally increased adult hearing thresholds. This can safely be communicated to worried patients. The childhood hearing disorders SNHL, CSOM and hearing loss after rAOM are associated with a faster deterioration of hearing throughout adulthood. This “faster aging” may reflect that an already impaired cochlea is more susceptible to age-related degeneration. The faster aging effect is moderate and hardly necessitates more frequent follow-up. The finding should be confirmed by a study with repeated audiometries in adulthood. Finally, our large study could not reveal significantly altered susceptibility to noise induced hearing loss associated with childhood SNHL or childhood otitis media. Although it still is important with protection against harmful noise, this is valuable information for people with a childhood-onset hearing loss.
List of papers
|Paper I: Aarhus L, Tambs K, Kvestad E, Engdahl B. Childhood otitis media: A cohort study with 30 year follow-up of hearing (the HUNT study). Ear and Hearing 2015;36(3):302-8. The paper is removed from the thesis in DUO due to publisher restrictions. The published version is available at: https://doi.org/10.1097/AUD.0000000000000118|
|Paper II: Aarhus L, Tambs K, Nafstad P, Bjørgan E, Engdahl B. Childhood sensorineural hearing loss: Effects of combined exposure with aging or noise exposure later in life. European Archives of otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery 2015. Online first. The paper is removed from the thesis in DUO due to publisher restrictions. The published version is available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00405-015-3649-y|
|Paper III: Aarhus L, Engdahl B, Tambs K, Hoffman H. The association between childhood hearing disorders and tinnitus in adulthood: Results from a cohort study (HUNT). JAMA Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery. 2015 Nov 1;141(11):983-9. The paper is removed from the thesis in DUO due to publisher restrictions. The published version is available at: https://doi.org/10.1001/jamaoto.2015.2378|
|Paper IV: Aarhus L, Tambs K, Hoffman H, Engdahl B. Childhood otitis media is associated with increased risk of dizziness in adulthood: The HUNT cohort study. Submitted. Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol. 2015 Sep 3. Online first. Submitted version, the published version is available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00405-015-3764-9|