L. Śliwa, S. Hatzopoulos, K. Kochanek
Apr 1, 2011
International journal of pediatric otorhinolaryngology
OBJECTIVE In newborn hearing screening, one exclusively applies objective hearing testing methods--based on evoked potentials and/or on otoacoustic emissions. However, when testing school children, one can consider both audiometric and electrophysiological methods. The choice of methods is determined by the aims of the program. If one wants to detect conductive hearing losses, impedance audiometry seems to be the method of choice. METHODS The aim of this study was to compare test performance measures from audiometric and objective methods (OAEs and impedance audiometry), in the hearing screening of school children. Screening protocols were applied on a group of 190 children of about 12 years of age (6th grade of primary school). RESULTS For a single application of a screening procedure, the best performance was observed in the automated four-tone audiometry, followed by the tympanometry and the TEOAE-based procedures. Screening performance was enhanced using a combination of automated and impedance audiometry. A four-tone audiometry test combined with tympanometry gives a sensitivity of 65%, and the PPV of 46%, which are reasonable values, acceptable for practical use. The use of a TEOAE protocol degrades the overall performance of screening. CONCLUSIONS Screening of school children is feasible with a combination of automated audiometry and tympanometry with time requirements equal to 3 min per subject.