Clin Exp Otorhinolaryngol.  2017 Jun;10(2):129-136. 10.21053/ceo.2016.00031.

Normative Hearing Threshold Levels in Koreans with Normal Tympanic Membranes and Estimated Prevalence of Hearing Loss

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Otolaryngology, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Biostatistics Team, Samsung Biomedical Research Institute, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Department of Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. yangsun.cho@gmail.com

Abstract


OBJECTIVES
We investigated the normative data on the hearing threshold levels of Koreans with normal tympanic membranes and the prevalence of hearing loss (HL) and nonserviceable hearing using the data from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (KNHANES) during 2010-2012.
METHODS
Data obtained from 16,673 participants ≥12-year-of-age with normal tympanic membranes who completed audiometric testing. We defined HL as the pure tone average (PTA) >25 dB hearing level at 500, 1,000, 2,000, and 3,000 Hz and non-serviceable hearing as PTA >40 dB hearing level.
RESULTS
The hearing levels at some frequencies (0.5, 3, and 6 kHz) did not differ in between the 10's and 20's, but the hearing thresholds at all frequencies increased gradually from the 30's. The hearing thresholds were higher in men than in women at high frequencies (3, 4, and 6 kHz) in the 30's and older. The prevalence of HL in either ear was 16.5% (estimates of 5.9 million), from 2.4% in the 10's up to 75.4% in the 70's and older. The prevalence of nonserviceable hearing in either ear was 6.8% (estimates of 2.5 million) and that of bilateral nonserviceable hearing was 2.5% (estimates of 0.9 million).
CONCLUSION
Hearing loss aggravated from the 30's at all frequencies and men showed poorer hearing levels than women at high frequencies. Hearing loss was a common condition and the prevalence of non-serviceable hearing in either ear, which needs hearing rehabilitation to help social communication, was 6.8%. Normative pure tone thresholds at each frequency can be used as referent values when counseling patients complaining of hearing loss.

Keyword

Hearing Loss; Normative Data; Pure Tone; Audiometry; Thresholds

MeSH Terms

Audiometry
Counseling
Ear
Female
Hearing Loss*
Hearing*
Humans
Korea
Male
Prevalence*
Rehabilitation
Tympanic Membrane*
Full Text Links
  • CEO
Actions
Cited
CITED
export Copy
Close
Share
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
Similar articles
    DB Error: unknown error