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Indian J Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2009 Mar;61(1):23-6. doi: 10.1007/s12070-009-0028-2. Epub 2009 Mar 31.

Neonatal screening for hearing loss: pilot study from a tertiary care centre.

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Department of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, 632 004 India.


Many developed countries have well established universal neonatal hearing screening programs. In India, the viability of such a program, in an already overburdened health system is indeed a challenge. This cross sectional study was undertaken to evaluate the possible burden of hearing loss among neonates born at a tertiary care hospital in Southern India. Five hundred neonates were screened with automated distortion product otoacoustic emission (aDPOAE) for hearing loss, 9.2% of whom had one or more high risk factors. Although 6.4% had hearing loss at initial assessment, only 1.6% had hearing loss on retesting with aDPOAE. Retesting with OAE before an automated Auditory brainstem response (aABR) helped to exclude patients without hearing loss. The frequency of moderate to moderately severe hearing loss in this study was 0.6%. This pilot study underscores the importance of the introduction of screening for congenital deafness in specialized centers in India, despite its challenges.


Auditory brainstem response; Neonatal hearing loss; Otoacou stic emission; Screening

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