J Audiol Otol.  2020 Oct;24(4):204-209. 10.7874/jao.2020.00381.

Nationwide Analysis of Mortality Rates and Related Surgical Procedures in Hearing Disability Patients in South Korea

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea


Background and Objectives
Hearing loss (HL) and its repercussions are major problems in today’s society. There are limited data on the relationship between degree of HL and otologic disorders. The aim of this study is to estimate mortality rates, rates of sudden idiopathic HL and related otologic surgical procedures in hearing disability patients in South Korea.
Subjects and Methods
Retrospective medical data for 160,205 patients with hearing disability was extracted. Mortality rates, rates of sudden idiopathic HL and related otologic surgical procedures were compared with a normal control group consisting of 865,475 people; approximately 5 times the number of hearing disability patients.
According to the Korean National Disability Registry (NDR), 0.458% of the population in South Korea suffered from hearing disability in 2015. Higher rates of mortality and sudden idiopathic HL were reported in hearing disability patients, increasing up to a maximum of 1.594 times and 1,039.695 times, respectively, compared to the normal control group. Mastoidectomy surgery was 2.5 times more frequently performed and pressure equalizing (PE) tube insertion was about 15 times more frequently performed in hearing disability patients.
Hearing disability is related to higher risks of mortality, sudden idiopathic HL and otologic surgical procedures, including mastoidectomy and PE tubing.


Hearing loss; Persons with hearing impairments; Mortality; Sudden hearing loss; Mastoidectomy; Middle ear ventilation; Republic of Korea
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