Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

US teen hearing loss is much lower than has been widely reported, study shows

Date:
September 21, 2010
Source:
University of Minnesota
Summary:
New research from hearing scientists shows that fewer than 20 percent of teenagers in the United States have a hearing loss as a result of exposure to loud sounds, thus offering a different analysis of previously reported data.

New research from hearing scientists shows that fewer than 20 percent of teenagers in the United States have a hearing loss as a result of exposure to loud sounds.
Credit: iStockphoto/Piotr Marcinski

New research from University of Minnesota hearing scientists shows that fewer than 20 percent of teenagers in the United States have a hearing loss as a result of exposure to loud sounds, thus offering a different analysis of data reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) in August.

The U of M's research, forthcoming in the Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, points out that the small hearing losses that audiologist are trying to identify with conventional hearing tests are subject to measurement error and that as many as 10 percent or more of children are falsely identified as having a noise induced hearing loss using these methods.

"Most media have emphasized the link between exposure to loud sounds and hearing loss when referring to the JAMA study," says Bert Schlauch, professor in the university's Department of Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences. "However, many of the findings of the JAMA study are not consistent with hearing loss caused by exposure to loud sounds." These conclusions were drawn from an ongoing study of the hearing of the University of Minnesota Marching Band and a forthcoming paper in the Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research authored by Schlauch and Edward Carney.

The U of M researchers measured the hearing of members of the university's marching band and found about 15 percent had hearing loss. Researchers followed the band members over the period of a year. When the results of multiple hearing tests were averaged, more than half of the apparent noise induced hearing losses disappeared, a finding consistent with measurement error.

The JAMA study examined two sets of data collected as part of a national study of health and nutrition. Schlauch and Carney examined the older data set that was included in the JAMA study. A highly cited study, published in the journal Pediatrics, examined the older data set and reported an estimated prevalence of 14.9 percent of 12 to 19-year-old children who had hearing loss consistent with noise exposure.

Schlauch and Carney report, based on computer simulations modeling the statistical properties of hearing tests, that as much as 10 percent of the 14.9 percent figure is consistent with false positive responses. In other words, people with normal hearing can produce spurious responses during a hearing test that look like a mild hearing loss, a result consistent with measurement error.

"Our findings do not mean that people should not be concerned about exposure to loud sounds, such as those from personal stereo devices, live music concerts or gun fire," Schlauch says. "The damage may build up over time and not appear until a person is older. For all sounds, the risk increases the more intense the sound and the longer the exposure, particularly from sustained or continuous sounds."

The paper, "Are False Positive Rates Leading to an Overestimation of Noise-Induced Hearing Loss," forthcoming in the Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, was co-authored by Bert Schlauch and Edward Carney. Ongoing work is a collaborative effort with Su-Hyun Jin, University of Texas at Austin, and Bert Schlauch, Peggy Nelson and Edward Carney in the Department of Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences, College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Minnesota. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal References:

  1. R. S. Schlauch, E. Carney. Are False Positive Rates Leading to an Overestimation of Noise-Induced Hearing Loss? Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 2010; DOI: 10.1044/1092-4388(2010/09-0132)
  2. J. Shargorodsky, S. G. Curhan, G. C. Curhan, R. Eavey. Change in Prevalence of Hearing Loss in US Adolescents. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 2010; 304 (7): 772 DOI: 10.1001/jama.2010.1124

Cite This Page:

University of Minnesota. "US teen hearing loss is much lower than has been widely reported, study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 September 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100920123548.htm>.
University of Minnesota. (2010, September 21). US teen hearing loss is much lower than has been widely reported, study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100920123548.htm
University of Minnesota. "US teen hearing loss is much lower than has been widely reported, study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100920123548.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Liberia Pleads for Help to Fight Ebola

Liberia Pleads for Help to Fight Ebola

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) Liberia's finance minister is urging the international community to quickly follow through on pledges of cash to battle Ebola. Bodies are piling up in the capital Monrovia as the nation awaits more help. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Global Ebola Aid Increasing But Critics Say It's Late

Global Ebola Aid Increasing But Critics Say It's Late

Newsy (Sep. 21, 2014) More than 100 tons of medical supplies were sent to West Africa on Saturday, but aid workers say the global response is still sluggish. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

AP (Sep. 21, 2014) Sierra Leone residents remained in lockdown on Saturday as part of a massive effort to confine millions of people to their homes in a bid to stem the biggest Ebola outbreak in history. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins