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Newborn hearing-screening project using transient evoked otoacoustic emissions: western sicily experience

  • Autori: Martines, F.; Porrello, M.; Ferrara, M.; Martines, M.; Martines, E.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2007
  • Tipologia: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: To study the incidence of congenital sensorineural hearing loss in all newborns introducing a screen test with a protocol no expensive, with a good "screen sensitivity" that could let an earlier identification of hearing impairment beginning early intervention by 2 months of age and increasing the probability of having language development within the normal range of development. METHODS: The study was conducted in Sciacca hospital from the beginning of 2003 to our days and was carried out with transient evoked otoacoustic emission using the criteria for PASS or RETEST and considering eventual prenatal and perinatal risk factors. All the newborns were divided into four groups each one with its personal secondary step program. RESULTS: In the years 2003-2004 the number of the newborns in Sciacca hospital was: 538 for 2003, 653 for 2004 with a total of 1191; all these infants were divided in three groups: resident in Sciacca, resident in the Sciacca borderlands and resident out of the district of Sciacca. The coverage (percentage of the target population who undergo the screen) was of 90% in the 2003 (483 newborns) and of 90% in the 2004 (585 newborns) with two cases of congenital sensorineural hearing loss identified. The incidence of sensorineural hearing loss, in the District of Sciacca, was estimated to be 2.07/1000 in 2003 and 1.70/1000 in 2004. CONCLUSIONS: The higher incidence of sensorineural hearing loss in our study is due to a high prevalence of consanguineous marriage in Sicily that was shown to be linked with hearing impairment. The "sensitivity value" was 95% at the first step but became 99% after the second step with a few number of false positive (0.74%). All the infants with a diagnosis of sensorineural hearing loss began a rehabilitation program before the age of 5 months and they have a good speech development and speech intelligibility.