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 ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 91  |  Page : 263--269

Audiometric notch and extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift in relation to total leisure noise exposure: An exploratory analysis


1 Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Bavarian Health and Food Safety Authority, Munich, Germany
2 Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Bavarian Health and Food Safety Authority, Munich; Institute and Outpatient Clinic for Occupational, Social and Environmental Medicine, Clinical Centre of the University of Munich, Germany
3 Centre for Early Cancer Detection and Cancer Registration, Bavarian Health and Food Safety Authority, Nuremberg, Germany
4 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University Hospital Regensburg, Germany
5 Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Bavarian Health and Food Safety Authority, Munich; University of Munich, Germany

Correspondence Address:
Veronika Weilnhammer
Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Bavarian Health and Food Safety Authority, Pfarrstr. 3, 80538 Munich
Germany
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/nah.NAH_28_17

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Background: Studies investigating leisure noise effect on extended high frequency hearing are insufficient and they have inconsistent results. The aim of this study was to investigate if extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift is related to audiometric notch, and if total leisure noise exposure is associated with extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift. Materials and Methods: A questionnaire of the Ohrkan cohort study was used to collect information on demographics and leisure time activities. Conventional and extended high-frequency audiometry was performed. We did logistic regression between extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift and audiometric notch as well as between total leisure noise exposure and extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift. Potential confounders (sex, school type, and firecrackers) were included. Results: Data from 278 participants (aged 18–23 years, 53.2% female) were analyzed. Associations between hearing threshold shift at 10, 11.2, 12.5, and 14 kHz with audiometric notch were observed with a higher prevalence of threshold shift at the four frequencies, compared to the notch. However, we found no associations between total leisure noise exposure and hearing threshold shift at any extended high frequency. Conclusion: This exploratory analysis suggests that while extended high-frequency hearing threshold shifts are not related to total leisure noise exposure, they are strongly associated with audiometric notch. This leads us to further explore the hypothesis that extended high-frequency threshold shift might be indicative of the appearance of audiometric notch at a later time point, which can be investigated in the future follow-ups of the Ohrkan cohort.






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