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May 1970

The Otolaryngologist and Learning Disabilities

Author Affiliations

Tulsa, Okla

Arch Otolaryngol. 1970;91(5):470-473. doi:10.1001/archotol.1970.00770040664015

Learning disabilities, or perceptual defects resulting in the inability to perceive or classify various symbols, may involve many systems including the auditory pathways. Perceptually handicapped children are most often characterized by poor attention to auditory stimuli and limited auditory memory. Medical history and an examination which includes simple motor tests are important in proper diagnosis. Routine audiological testing, special discrimination tests, such as the Wepman, and auditory memory assessment should be done. The differential diagnosis includes high-frequency hearing impairment, psychopathologic effects, and mental retardation. The otolaryngologist should be prepared to recognize and direct a child with suspected abnormalities to appropriate evaluation. Therapy in general is based on special educational situations and the use of stimulant drugs. Long-term results are yet to be fully evaluated.

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