This is a cross-sectional study. Hearing loss and its complications appear to be increasingly common in elderly people. Hearing impairment is becoming increasingly prevalent in old age and unfortunately many physicians do not view hearing loss as a significant problem and like the patient, often attribute it to normal aging.
The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of hearing loss and its association with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in elderly people in a newly developed society. Ear Nose Throat (ENT) and Endocrinology outpatient clinics of the Hamad General and Ru-meilah Hospitals, Hamad Medical Corporation.
All subjects aged more then 50 years who were visiting the Endocrinology and ENT outpa-tient clinics of the Hamad Medical Corporation with hearing difficulty were included in this study during the period from January 2003 to November 2006. During this study period, prevalence, hearing, audiological test, family history and medical problems associated with hearing impairment in old patients were recorded. The hearing loss was evaluated using two audiometers Grason Stadler GSI 61 and Madsen Orbiter 922.
The prevalence of hearing impairment was higher among men (52.6%) than in women (49.5%). Also, hearing impairment was higher in Qataris (66.3%) than in non-Qataris (33.7%). 40.5% of the studied subjects were consanguineously married couples. Very se-vere (71- 90 dB) and profound (90 ? 120 dB) cases were found more in men (13.8% & 9.3%) than in women (10.2% & 8.2%). The associated risk factors were higher in men such as T2DM (37.8% & 25.5%), hypertension (37% vs 27%), retinopathy (31.7% vs 19.9%), Nephropathy (25.6% vs 17.9%), Neuropathy (22.8% vs 14.3%) than in women. There was a statistically significant relationship between both the genders in all the risk fac-tors.
The study findings revealed that the prevalence of hearing loss was higher in elderly men than in women. Elderly individuals with hearing loss were likely to have T2DM and other risk factors like hypertension, retinopathy, nephropathy and neuropathy. Author(s):
Abdulbari Bener , Ahmad H. A. Salahaldin , Sara M. Darwish , Abdulla O.A.A. Al-Hamaq , Loida Gansan