Pilot Study to Evaluate the Prevalence of Hearing Loss in a Rural Community Using Dp Oae Screener
Hearing impairment is a leading cause of disease burden, yet population-based studies that measure hearing impairment are rare. In a developing country where most of the population live in rural areas this disability causes educational and emotional disability in children and economic and social disability in adults. A Pilot study was conducted for screening for hearing loss in a rural community using Dp OAE screener. A total number of 1117 rural and tribal populations between age groups of 6 months to 70 years were screened. Pure tone audiometry was done simultaneously. It was found that the prevalence of hearing loss in the community does not correlate with the symptoms expressed by the population with 63.31% failing the test (refer) which was confirmed by Pure Tone Audiometry. It was found that among patients with “refer” there was disabling hearing loss in adults (>80%; 40dB HL and above).This model envisages the use of Oto acoustic emissions which are sensitive to both sensorineural and conductive hearing loss, to be an cost effective screening tool in a rural community.