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February 1979

Brain Stem Evoked Response Audiometry in Newborn Hearing Screening

Author Affiliations

From the Speech, Hearing, and Neurosensory Center, Children's Hospital and Health Center, and the Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1979;105(2):86-90. doi:10.1001/archotol.1979.00790140032006

• Brain stem evoked response audiometry (BERA) has been used as an auditory screening procedure in three groups of newborn infants. Group 1 consisted of 220 normal-term infants who were tested within 72 hours of birth; no hearing abnormalities were uncovered (386 ears), and their threshold responses (for clicks) lay between a 10- and 20-dB hearing level (re: adult). Group 2 consisted of 75 newborns who were treated in an intensive care unit for one to 14 weeks; four were found to have severe sensorineural hearing loss (seven ears) at the time of discharge. Group 3 consisted of a group of 325 infants, 1 year or older, who had previously been discharged from the same intensive care unit; of these infants, an additional four showed severe sensorineural hearing loss. All abnormalities that were identified by BERA were subsequently confirmed by conventional audiometric measures. The estimate of an incidence of severe hearing loss in one of 50 infants who required intensive care in the neonatal period calls for careful testing of this population.

(Arch Otolaryngol 105:86-90, 1979)

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