Early Diagnosis of Hearing Loss in the Developing Countries
Hearing impairment is a universal human tragedy compelling millions to live a disabled life. Solution to the problem is also universal. Early detection of hearing impairment especially amongst the children is vital for successful treatment and rehabilitation. According to the study of Yoshinaga Itano et al., children identified early with hearing loss attained better speech and language than those identified later. According to their findings, 90% of the infants with early identification of hearing loss developed vocabulary skills within the first 3 years of life. On the contrary, only 25% of the infants whose hearing loss was identified later attained vocabulary development within the first 3 years of life. Many countries in America, Europe, Asia, and Australia already undertook universal neonatal/newborn hearing screening program to find out the presence of hearing impairment within a few days after delivery. Their aim is to diagnose hearing impairment within first 6 months of life. Besides these there are many more modern tests and devices available for early detection of hearing loss. Unfortunately they are very costly, technically sophisticated and are beyond the affordability of the poor and developing countries of the world where vast majority of the people live.
KeywordsHearing Loss Hearing Impairment Hearing Test Speech Language Pathologist Hearing Screening Program
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