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Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2011 Aug;75(8):1040-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ijporl.2011.05.019. Epub 2011 Jun 15.

Findings from multidisciplinary evaluation of children with permanent hearing loss.

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Division of Pediatric Otolaryngology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, OH 45229-3039, United States.



To describe clinical findings from a multidisciplinary program for children with permanent hearing loss (PHL).


Retrospective chart review at a tertiary care children's hospital.


Two hundred patients charts were selected from the population of 260 children with permanent hearing loss presenting between July 2005 and December 2006.


PHL etiology; radiographic findings; clinical findings by genetics, ophthalmology, developmental pediatrics, speech pathology, and aural rehabilitation.


Etiology of hearing loss was determined in 60% of subjects. Genetic causes of hearing loss were identified or presumed (positive history of first degree relative with hearing loss) in 27% of the children. Structural ear anomalies were found in 20% of children. Among the 36% of children with CNS imaging, abnormal findings were noted in 32%. There were a high rate of ophthalmological findings (53%) among children seen by ophthalmology (n = 105). Neurodevelopmental evaluations were completed in 58% of subjects and clinically significant findings were noted in 68%. Of the 61% of children who receiving received speech/language evaluations, 77% required intervention. Over half of the 40% of subjects who had an aural rehabilitation evaluation needed therapy. There were not significant differences in rates of findings for children with mild or unilateral hearing loss as compared to children with more severe degrees of hearing loss.


Interdisciplinary medical evaluation of children with PHL allows for the identification and treatment of clinically significant ophthalmologic, neurodevelopmental, genetic, and speech/language disorders. A high rate of CNS and temporal bone abnormalities were identified. These findings provide an understanding of the importance of considering thorough medical and developmental evaluations among children who are deaf/hard of hearing.

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