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Advances in pediatric audiological and vestibular disorders

from the International Journal of Audiology

This Article does not have an abstract.

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Diagnosis

from Seminars in Hearing

The goal of early identification of hearing loss in children should include the timely and accurate diagnosis of permanent unilateral hearing loss (UHL) of any degree and mild bilateral hearing loss (MBHL), which are common conditions of childhood. UHL and MBHL can result in developmentally significant conditions that can affect speech, language, learning, and social-emotional development. This article will review current assessment strategies that contribute to the goal of early and accurate diagnosis of UHL and MBHL. An overview of the components of the test battery includes electrophysiologic, otoacoustic, and behavioral methods while using ear-specific and frequency-specific strategies. Issues are discussed that may challenge audiologists during the identification process. The article concludes that though there are many unanswered questions in need of further research, current assessment strategies generally are effective and time and cost efficient in the identification of UHL and MBHL.

Prevalence and Effects

from Seminars in Hearing

Permanent unilateral hearing loss (UHL) of any degree and mild bilateral hearing loss (MBHL) are common conditions of childhood. When left undetected and in the absence of intervention, both UHL and MBHL can adversely affect development and can result in difficulties in speech, language, behavior, and academic achievement for some children. This article describes the prevalence of UHL and MBHL among newborns and school-aged children, the definitions of UHL and MBHL, and provides an overview of the effects of these hearing losses on children’s development. The article concludes that some children with UHL and MBHL are more at risk for problems than are others. Important questions for future research studies to ask are what subgroups of children with UHL and MBHL are likely to have difficulties with speech, language, reading, academic performance, and behavior; how do we identify these children; and what kinds of interventions are most appropriate for them?