Incidence of hearing loss assessed by the universal newborn hearing screening in the region of Rijeka

The incidence of congenital hearing loss occurs in 1 to 4 per 1000 newborns. The age of discovery of hearing loss is essential for later speech and language development, optimally in the newborn period. The objectives of this research were to study the frequency of hearing loss in newborns by the Universal Newborn Hearing Test, and to suggest a multidisciplinary model of care of newborns with hearing loss. Using the Evoked Otoacustic Emission method we tested 5054 (98.9%) newborns of all live newborns at the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics of the Clinical Hospital Center Rijeka during the period from October 16, 2002 until August 31, 2004. There were 287 (5.7%) newborns who had positive screening results. At the 3-week follow-up retest, using the same method, 74 (1.4%) newborns again had a positive screening test . Using the Automatic Auditory Brain Stem Response method bilateral hearing loss was found in 3 newborns (incidence of 0.5‰). A statistically significant difference was found in the incidence of hearing loss in the group of children with risk factors during delivery. Using the Universal Newborn Hearing Test and following the Practice Guidelines for early hearing loss we tested 98.9% of all live newborns and we achieved early discovery of children with hearing loss as well as referral of those children to early rehabilitation and treatment.
Category: Original scientific paper
Volume: Vol. 49, No 4, october - december 2005
Authors: V. Mahulja-Stamenković, I. Prpić, S. Zaputović
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