Journal of Public Health

, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 177–184 | Cite as

Epidemiological and rehabilitation analyses of patients with hearing disabilities of Uyghur and Han Chinese ethnicities in Xinjiang, China: a comparative study

  • Le Wang
  • Alim Aili
  • Qin Liu
  • Yu Chen
  • Hua Yao
Original Article



The main objective of this study was to explore the differences in epidemiological characteristics and rehabilitation needs between Uyghur and Han Chinese ethnicities, with a view to providing a foundation for the development of effective hearing-disability rehabilitation policies in Xinjiang, China. We conducted a population-based epidemiological study. The epidemiological characteristics of the aural disabilities were examined and demand for aural rehabilitation services evaluated. We further investigated the demographic characteristics of the hearing-disability populations from different ethnic communities in Xinjiang and the social-environmental support provided.

Subjects and methods

Subjects were randomly selected from individuals aged 2 years and above with a hearing disability who were registered in the Xinjiang Disabled Persons’ Federation. Analyses were performed on two population groups (Uyghur and Han Chinese ethnicities) in Xinjiang, China. Subjects were selected via simple random sampling, and the χ2 test was used for data analysis.


Our results disclosed a higher prevalence of hearing disabilities in males than females. Moreover, the recovery service demand rate of patients from Southern Xinjiang was higher than that of individuals from Northern Xinjiang. The collective findings strongly highlight the overall need to focus on meeting the high demand for barrier-free facilities and assistive devices.


Rehabilitation services offered by the government are not in line with demand. Comprehensive assessment of the rehabilitation requirements of hearing-disability patients, systematic provision of adequate services and training of technical personnel are important measures that should be adopted to alter the present situation and improve treatment options for hearing disabilities in China.


Epidemiological Rehabilitation Hearing disability Xinjiang 



We are grateful to all the study participants in addition to the researchers, clinicians, technicians and administrative staff involved in this research. We thank International Science Editing for professional language editing of the manuscript.

Authors’ contributions

LW had full access to all data and was responsible for the integrity of the data and accuracy of analysis. HY contributed to the study supervision. LW, QL, YC and HY contributed to the study concept and design. LW and HY collected the data. LW and AA conducted statistical analyses with input from QL, YC and HY. LW and HY wrote the first draft. All authors read and approved the final version of the manuscript.


This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant no. 81360158) and the Young Scientists Fellowship Program of the First Affiliated Hospital of Xinjiang Medical University (grant no. 200963) grants awarded to Dr. Yu Chen. Mr. Alim Aili was funded by a grant from the Humanities and Social Science Foundation of Xinjiang Medical University (grant no. 2016XYFG27). The fund providers made no contribution to the study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish or preparation of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethics approval

The study was reviewed and approved by the Ethics Committee of the First Affiliated Hospital of Xinjiang Medical University prior to commencement.

Informed consent

Informed written consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


  1. Aguero-Torres H, Hilleras PK, Winblad B (2001) Disability in activities of daily living among the elderly. Curr Opin Psychiatry 14:355–359CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Al Khabori M, Khandekar R (2004) The prevalence and causes of hearing impairment in Oman: a community-based cross-sectional study. Int J Audiol 43(8):486–492CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Chen X, Huang DF, Chen SZ, Liu P, Lin AH, Li H, Jiang MX (2009) Cause and countermeasure study on hearing impairment adults in Guangdong province. China J Rehabil Med 24:439–441 (in Chinese)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Davis A, McMahon CM, Pichora-Fuller KM, Russ S, Lin F, Olusanya BO, Chadha S, Tremblay KL (2016) Aging and hearing health: The life-course approach. Gerontologist 56:S256–S267CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Huang L.N. (2007) Bulletin of the second national survey on disability in Xinjiang in 2006. (in Chinese)
  6. Li LX, Zhang L (2000) Hearing disability survey in Mongolia. J Audiol Speech Pathol 8:239–240 (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  7. Liu C, Bu XK (2005) An epidemiological study of hearing loss. Chin J Otorhinolaryngol Head Neck Surg 40(10):795–797Google Scholar
  8. National Bureau of Statistics of the People’s Republic of China (2016) Second Bulletin of the main data of the 2006 sample survey on disability and its description .
  9. Nondahl DM, Cruickshanks KJ, Wiley TL, Klein R, Klein BEK, Tweed TS (2002) Prevalence and 5-year incidence of tinnitus among older adults: the Epidemiology of Hearing Loss study. J Am Acad Audiol 13:323–331PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Office of the second national survey on disability (2007) Manual of the second national survey on disability in China. Huaxia Publishing House in Beijing 33–34 (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  11. Olusanya BO, Neumann KJ, Saunders JE (2014) The global burden of disabling hearing impairment: a call to action. Bull World Health Organ 92:367–373CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  12. Shapiro J (2003) A caring partnership: expectations of ageing persons with disabilities for their primary care doctors. Fam Pract 20:635–641CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Statistic Bureau of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region (2016) The number of ethnic minorities in Major Years. (in Chinese)
  14. Stevens G, Flaxman S, Brunskill E, Mascarenhas M, Mathers CD, Finucane M (2013) Global Burden of Disease Hearing Loss Expert Group. Global and regional hearing impairment prevalence: an analysis of 42 studies in 29 countries. Eur J Pub Health 23:146–152CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Sun XB, Li XQ, Zhang H (2006) Introduction of the standard of hearing disability in the second sample survey of disabled persons in China. J Audiol Speech Pathol 14:447–448 (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  16. Sun XB, Wei ZY, Yu LM, Wang Q, Liang W (2008) Prevalence and etiology of people with hearing impairments in China. Chin J Epidemiol 29:643–646 (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  17. World Health Organization (2012) WHO global estimates on prevalence of hearing loss.
  18. Yoshinaga-Itano C, Sedey AL (1998) Language of early—and later-identified children with hearing loss. Pediatrics 02:1161–1171CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017
corrected publication January/2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Le Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Alim Aili
    • 2
  • Qin Liu
    • 3
  • Yu Chen
    • 4
  • Hua Yao
    • 5
  1. 1.School of Public HealthXinjiang Medical UniversityUrumqi, XinjiangPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Department of Translational Medicine Management, Clinical Medicine Research InstituteThe First Affiliated Hospital of Xinjiang Medical UniversityUrumqiPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Secretarial DepartmentThe First Affiliated Hospital of Xinjiang Medical UniversityUrumqi, XinjiangPeople’s Republic of China
  4. 4.Department of OtorhinolaryngologyShenzhen Hospital of Southern Medical UniversityShenzhenPeople’s Republic of China
  5. 5.The First Affiliated Hospital of Xinjiang Medical UniversityUrumqi, XinjiangPeople’s Republic of China

Personalised recommendations