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Prospective study of hearing loss in schools for deaf children in Assir region, Saudi Arabia

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Abstract:

In this prospective study, various types and etiology of hearing loss among children attending public schools for the deaf were examined. One hundred students from two schools below the age of 15 years were enrolled in the study. Questionnaire was sent to all parents. Multiple modalities of investigations of hearing impairment in the children were performed. Out of the 100 students 78 (78%) had sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) which was congenital in origin while in (22%) SNHL was acquired as a result of infancy or childhood infection. Forty one cases (41%) were born as a result of consanguineous marriages. Thirty two cases (32%) had a family history of deafness. Ninety (90%) of the students were found to have moderate to severe SNHL. The majority of these children were found to have no hearing aids and some of them were using non-functional hearing aids. Preventive methods through education of the public remain mandatory to minimize the incidence of SNHL. We recommend continuous monitoring and evaluation in association with appropriate care and rehabilitation for these children in order to achieve an acceptable level of speech and literacy.

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