ABSTRACT: National guidelines for aetiologic investigation of childhood deafness were developed as the Newborn Hearing Screening Program (NHSP) was being implemented in the United Kingdom. This guidance document was expected to be incorporated into the operational procedure of the NHSP.
This criterion-based audit compared local care set against developed guidelines that can be used to assess the appropriateness of specific investigations, services and outcomes. Data on children diagnosed to have sensorineural deafness from March 2002-2004 were extracted from an established computerized database for analysis.
Forty-seven children were included; 17 have bilateral severe to profound hearing loss, 25 have bilateral mild to moderate loss and 5 with unilateral loss. A high proportion of Pakistani children were from consanguineous marriages with a family history of deafness. Total 29.8% of children were diagnosed through newborn screening and 70.2% detected through hearing surveillance programmes. For children with bilateral severe to profound deafness, 53.0% accepted, 5.9% declined and 41.2% were not offered imaging of their inner ears. A total of 47.1% accepted and 52.9% declined electrocardiograph (ECG) evaluation. Total 70.6% accepted and 29.4% declined connexin mutations testing. Parental requests were required for those with lesser degree of hearing loss. Total 24% accepted, 28% declined and 48% were not offered connexin testing. None were offered ECG and imaging. Testing for congenital infections was inappropriate for children over 1 year old. Ten subjects accepted and five declined this investigation. In the total group, 63.8% accepted, 17.0% declined and 19.1% were not offered referral to the ophthalmic service. Total 46.8% accepted, 44.7% declined and 8.5% were not offered referral to genetics service. Investigations resulted in two connexin-positive children with moderate loss.
Our study identified key areas where guidelines were not followed. These were related to lack of funding and parental choice. This sample has a higher connexin 'hit' rate for lesser degree deafness.
Child Care Health and Development 12/2005; 31(6):649-57. · 1.20 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: To examine the uptake of relevant hospital services by families with deaf children and to compare use of these services between Pakistani and white families.
A total of 214 deaf children with amplification aids who attended their paediatric outpatient and school medical appointments from October 2000 to March 2003 were studied in an observational cohort study.
The demographic profile of both the Pakistani and white families was similar. Pakistani children had a statistically significant excess of the following risk factors: consanguineous marriages (86.4% Pakistani, 1.5% white), family history of deafness (66.4% Pakistani, 38.8% white), and family size (birth order >5: 12.8% Pakistani: 4.5% white). White children were more likely to have had post-meningitis deafness (1.4% Pakistani, 13.4% white) and congenital infections, or have dysmorphic features (5.0% Pakistani, 13.4% white). Overall the uptake of relevant hospital services by Pakistani and white families was very similar irrespective of an early or late diagnosis. There was an increased likelihood of white families declining cochlear implantation (17.6% Pakistani, 75.0% white).
This study did not show significant differences in hospital service uptake despite different risk profiles for childhood deafness for both Pakistani and white families in Bradford. Among specialist services offered, cochlear implantation was more likely to be accessed by Pakistani families.
Archives of Disease in Childhood 05/2005; 90(5):454-9. · 2.88 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study is to compare the health status of Armed Forces and civilian infants, accounting for social class. In a prospective cohort study, demographic data were obtained from mothers of liveborn infants from 436 civilian and 162 Armed Forces families. Birth details were taken from hospital maternity and child health systems. A six month follow-up was completed by health visitors. Standard social class classification, based on occupation, was used for civilian families and a new equivalent scheme for military personnel. No significant differences were found between civilian and military infants for birthweight, prematurity and failure to thrive. Military infants had significantly more hospital admissions (P=0.015) and accident and emergency attendances (P=0.002) mainly accounted for by the 'manual' social classes of the Armed Forces. Infant health status of civilian and military babies did not differ overall. Increased uptake of hospital services by military families can be explained by local circumstances.
Public Health 10/2000; 114(5):374-9. · 1.35 Impact Factor