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Characteristics of hearing-impairment among patients in Ghana

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The causes, and characteristics of hearing-impairment were determined prospectively among six thousand, four hundred and twenty-eight (6,428) patients who reported at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) with hearing problems. The purpose of the study was to determine the characteristics and some causes of hearing loss of patients who report for management at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital. The procedure adopted included a detailed case history, Otoscopy and Pure-tone Audiometry. Of the 6,428 patients, 5,734 (89.9%) were diagnosed as having significant hearing loss. There were more hearing impaired women than men at all ages. Majority of the patients had mild hearing loss. The overall prevalence of Sensorineural Hearing Loss was more in worse ear than better ear. Again, the occurrence of Sensorineural Hearing Loss was more than other types of hearing loss. Noise, Fever, Presbycusis, Sickness, Meningitis and Meniere\'s diseases were the major causes of Sensorineural Hearing Loss. Conductive Hearing Loss was attributed in the main to Wax, Foreign Bodies, Otitis Media, and Traumas. These findings have important implications on the need of resources for rehabilitation. African Journal of Health Sciences Vol. 13 (1-2) 2008: pp. 110-116

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