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Codas. 2015 Sep-Oct;27(5):428-32. doi: 10.1590/2317-1782/20152014101.

Interaction between diabetes mellitus and hypertension on hearing of elderly.

[Article in English, Portuguese]

Author information

Departamento de Fisioterapia, Fonoaudiologia e Terapia Ocupacional, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil.
Hospital Universitário, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil.



Chronic diseases and metabolic changes may act as accelerating factor in the degeneration of the auditory system due to age. However, studies involving an association between hearing loss and diabetes mellitus (DM) and hypertension (HA) in the elderly have shown controversial conclusions. Thus, further studies on this topic are needed in order to elucidate the effect of these chronic diseases on the auditory system.


To compare the hearing thresholds of elderly patients with DM, HA and DM + HA with a control group (CG).


Retrospective study was conducted through survey charts of 80 elderly people with full hearing assessment, between 2008 and 2012. Subjects were divided into four groups: DM, HA, DM + HA and without chronic diseases known (CG). The ANOVA, Tukey and Mauchly tests, with a significance level of 0.05, were used.


There was no statistically significant difference between the ears, which are grouped. Comparisons between the means of hearing thresholds of CG and DM or HA showed no statistically significant differences. However, a statistically significant difference in the comparison between these three groups and DM + HA group for several of the frequencies evaluated was observed.


It was found that older adults with DM and hypertension associated showed greater hearing impairment in comparison with the other groups, suggesting a synergistic effect of the two chronic diseases on hearing.

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