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Prevalence and degree of hearing loss in 85-year-olds: a birth cohort study with a longitudinal design

Conference paper
Authors Hanna Göthberg
Tomas Tengstrand
Ulf Rosenhall
André M. Sadeghi
Published in Oral presentation World Conference of audiology Cape town
Publication year 2018
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology
Language en
Links https://easternsun.eventsair.com/Qu...
Subject categories Audiology

Abstract

Introduction: As the proportion of older people increase, there is a need to investigate the prevalence of age related hearing loss, using standardized protocols and classification methods. Aims: To determine hearing thresholds in an unscreened birth cohort of 85 year olds (born in 1930) in an urban city and to identify differences in pure-tone hearing acuity between two birth cohorts, 30 years apart. Results from longitudinal data between 75-85 years of age, is also presented in this study. Methods: This study is part of The Gothenburg H70 Cohorts Studies (H70), a large gereontological and epidemiological study with a cross-sectional population-based design. Hearing thresholds (0.25-8 KHz), were measured, using automated pure-tone audiometry, in men and women respectively (n=286). Additionally, a subsample (n=182) was studied longitudinally from the age of 75-85 with pure-tone audiometry. An hearing investigation was also done in an earlier cohort of 85 year olds, born in 1901-02, (n=249). Results: Based on WHO´s criteria the hearing loss prevalence was 86% for men and 81% for women. An improvement (p<0.01) was found in hearing loss prevalence, hearing thresholds and pure-tone average (PTA 4) in men born 1930 compared with men born 1901-02. There were no significant differences in prevalence or PTA 4 between women born in 1901-02 and 1930. The longitudinal study showed a significant hearing deterioration between the age of 75-85 years with similar annual decline for men and women, both regarding rate and frequency pattern. Conclusion: The prevalence of hearing loss is high at the age of 85 (>80%). The hearing acuity for pure tones has improved significantly among men over three decades but not in women in Sweden. The hearing acuity between men and women has become more alike compared to the earlier birth cohort. Similar annual decline was seen in men and women between the age of 75-85. Despite the improved hearing in men, the future need of aural rehabilitation is expected to increase due to demographic changes. Further research is required to elucidate contributing factors for improved hearing among Swedish 85-year-old men.

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