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January 1979

Brain Stem Evoked Potential Findings in Children With Otitis Media

Author Affiliations

From the Brain-Behavior Research Center, Langley Porter Neuropsychiatric Institute, University of California (Ms Mendelson and Drs Salamy and McKean), and Letterman Army Medical Center (Dr Lenoir), San Francisco. Dr McKean died Sept 4, 1977.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1979;105(1):17-20. doi:10.1001/archotol.1979.00790130021005

• Sixty-three children from 2 to 12 years of age were studied by means of brain stem evoked potentials (BEP) and otoscopic evaluation in a preliminary assessment of the sensitivity of BEP latency measures to middle ear abnormality. Wave I proved to be the most sensitive component; 81.25% of subjects with acute suppurative otitis media and 62.50% of subjects with secretory otitis media demonstrated latencies prolonged by more than 1 SD beyond the values observed in normal control subjects. Of the same subject groups, 86.21% and 93.31% demonstrated wave I latencies within normal limits upon retesting after the otitis had resolved. The BEP technique permitted identification of several subjects with abnormal audiometric findings despite normal otoscopy. There are implications for use of the BEP as a clinical adjunct to traditional methods of auditory assessment.

(Arch Otolaryngol 105:17-20, 1979)