The impact of hearing loss on the quality of life of elderly adults

ENT and Audiology Department, University Hospital of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy.
Clinical Interventions in Aging (Impact Factor: 2.08). 06/2012; 7:159-63. DOI: 10.2147/CIA.S26059
Source: PubMed


Hearing loss is the most common sensory deficit in the elderly, and it is becoming a severe social and health problem. Especially in the elderly, hearing loss can impair the exchange of information, thus significantly impacting everyday life, causing loneliness, isolation, dependence, and frustration, as well as communication disorders. Due to the aging of the population in the developed world, presbycusis is a growing problem that has been reported to reduce quality of life (QoL). Progression of presbycusis cannot be remediated; therefore, optimal management of this condition not only requires early recognition and rehabilitation, but it also should include an evaluation of QoL status and its assessment.

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Available from: Stefano Pelucchi
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    • "Despite the fact that age-related hearing loss affects more than one-third of the world population over 60 years-old, rising to more than two-third of those in their 70's [8] [9] [10] [11] [12], currently there is no available medical treatment for this age-related sensory dysfunction. This has led to an important humanitarian cost in terms of isolation, frustration, depression, cognitive decline and decrease in quality of life, along with an enormous and growing economic burden in health care costs [13] [14] [15] [16] [17]. In this regard, there is extensive evidence that excessive free radical formation along with diminished cochlear blood flow are essential factors involved in mechanisms of other stress-related hearing loss, such as that associated with noise or ototoxic drug exposure. "
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    ABSTRACT: Hearing disorders in congenital or progressive forms in childhood as well as in elderly period of life are very important factors, lowering patient ́s quality of life and increasing of healthcare costs. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy could be very effective tool in the comprehensive healthcare in patients. In our minireview are described baseline premises for the exploitation of oxygen facilities at higher pressure for healing of auditory system.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2015
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    • "The progressive aging of society is leading to an increase in the prevalence of hearing loss worldwide. Although hearing loss is not directly life threatening, it may impair social functioning and quality of life, causing isolation, frustration, and impaired communication [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]. Meanwhile, several studies have revealed that sleeping disorders such as insomnia and daytime sleepiness are associated with hearing impairments, including hearing loss and tinnitus [7] [8] [9] [10]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Hearing loss leads to impaired social functioning and quality of life. Hearing loss is also associated with sleeping disorders and cardiometabolic risk factors. Here, we determined whether subclinical hearing loss is associated with sleep duration and cardiometabolic risk factors in a cross-sectional and longitudinal study of healthy Japanese general population. 48,091 men and women aged 20-79 years who underwent medical checkups were included in a cross-sectional study, and 6,674 were included in an 8-year longitudinal study. The prevalence of audiometrically determined hearing loss (>25 dB) at 4000 and 1000 Hz increased significantly with increasing sleep duration in any age strata. Logistic regression analysis showed that compared with reference sleep duration (6 h) longer sleep duration (≥8 h) was significantly associated with hearing loss, even after adjusting for potential confounding factors. Simultaneously, hearing loss was significantly associated with male sex, diabetes, and no habitual exercise. In the longitudinal study, the risk of longer sleep duration (≥8 h) after 8 years was significantly greater in subjects with hearing loss at 4000 Hz at baseline. In conclusion, current results suggest a potential association of subclinical hearing loss with longer sleep duration and cardiometabolic risk factors in a Japanese general population.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · International Journal of Otolaryngology
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    • "With an increasing elderly population, this becomes a problem for the individual as well as for society (Ciorba et al., 2012). Environmental factors such as previous exposure to noise and ototoxic drug treatment probably affect the onset and severity of the auditory impairment but genetic factors are likely to significantly influence the progression (Gates et al., 1999; Newman et al., 2012). "
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    ABSTRACT: We report here beneficial effects of life-long dietary restriction on the progression of age-associated cochlear degeneration in female Sprague-Dawley rats. Thirty-month old rats on a 70% dietary restriction were compared to ad libitum fed age-matched rats, and three-month old adult rats. As expected, aged dietary restricted rats displayed about 20% higher survival rate than age-matched rats fed ad libitum. This difference was reflected also in the auditory system. In the dietary restricted group, 73% of the subjects had preserved auditory reflexes (Preyer), and only modest degeneration of the stria vascularis of the inner ear was observed. In contrast, aged ad libitum fed animals, of which only 15% had detectable Preyer reflexes, showed a marked thinning, cellular degeneration and loss of cell processes in the stria vascularis. The extent of loss of sensory hair cells (~24%) was similar in both the aged groups, and neither group showed a significant reduction in the number of spiral ganglion neurons across adult life-span. The observations thus demonstrate that dietary restriction delays age-related degradation of the auditory system. The results provide further insights into the mechanisms of strial presbycusis.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · Experimental gerontology
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