An Epidemiological Study on Burden of Hearing Loss and Its Associated Factors in Delhi, India

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Introduction:Hearing loss is the second most common cause of years lived with disability (YLD). The present study was conducted with an objective to determine the prevalence, severity, and sociodemographic correlates of hearing loss among people aged 3 months and above in selected areas of Delhi, India.Material and Methods:A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted in selected rural and urban areas of Delhi among population aged 3 months and above. Of the total sample size of 664, 85 study subjects (17 households) were taken from the rural area, and 579 (116 households) were taken from urban areas. The hearing test and ear examination was carried out using handheld oto-acoustic emission (OAE) in children <5 years of age and pure tone audiometry in individuals above 5 years of age. SPSS software was used for data analysis. Chi-square test was used to analyze difference between proportions.Results:Overall prevalence of hearing loss was 25.1%. Conductive hearing loss was present among 61 (10.3%) subjects, mixed hearing loss was found among 5 (0.8%) subjects, and sensorineural hearing loss among 94 (15.8%) subjects. On OAE, 62 (89.9%) children passed the test, and 7 (10.1%) were referred. Increasing age, female gender, and low education were significantly associated with hearing loss.Conclusion:There was high prevalence of hearing loss in the study sample. Urgent interventions are required to identify individuals with hearing loss so that its serious complications can be reduced.

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