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Otorhinolaryngology 2021 June;71(2):95-9

DOI: 10.23736/S2724-6302.20.02335-8

Copyright © 2020 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Evaluation of newborn hearing screening program in ASL Roma 1, Rome, Italy

Francesca CIANFRONE 1, Farah UBAH 2, Carolina CAZZANIGA 2, Sakina ABUHAJAR 3, Massimo RALLI 4 , Diletta ANGELETTI 4, Raffaele CHIARELLI 1, Francesco TAURO 1, Mario BOSCIONI 2, Paolo RUSCITO 1

1 Unit of Otolaryngology, ASL Roma 1, Rome, Italy; 2 Department of Neonatology, ASL Roma 1, Rome, Italy; 3 Department of Neonatology, Cristo Re Hospital, Rome, Italy; 4 Department of Sense Organs, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy



BACKGROUND: Universal Newborn Hearing Screening (UNHS) is strongly recommended to evaluate the hearing health in childhood and to early detect hearing loss in newborns. This study aimed at evaluating the effectiveness of the UNHS Program of ASL RM 1, Rome Italy, from January 2019 to March 2020, according to Joint Committee on Infant Hearing recommendations, as well as to describe the prevalence of risk factors for hearing loss within the study population and their impact on the respective program.
METHODS: The registration records of screened newborns throughout the territory of ASL RM1, which comprises as Neonatology Department, San Filippo Neri Hospital, Santo Spirito Hospital, Cristo Re Hospital, Santa Famiglia Clinic and San Filippo Neri Hospital were analyzed. It was established the prevalence of “pass” and “fail” in test and retest, retest percentage of attendance and referral for audiological diagnosis. Risk factors for hearing loss were described, as well as their influence on “pass” and “fail” rates.
RESULTS: A total of 5107 newborns were screened at First Level with Otoacoustic Emissions (OAE); for the second level with OAE, Automated Auditory Brainstem Response testing, 70% presented no risk factors whereas 99% did, antibiotic therapy being the most frequent. Regarding the percentage of referral for diagnosis, the program reached indexes recommended by the Joint Committee on Infant Hearing. The most prevalent risk factor within the population was antibiotic therapy.
CONCLUSIONS: An early diagnosis of deafness is mandatory to prevent permanent consequences, and so the implementation of UNHS programs is an optimal solution to achieve this goal. The UNHS program in ASL RM1 has required consistent organization and employment of dedicated personnel, in addition to the involvement of family, neonatologists and pediatricians to identify newborns with progressive or late-onset SNHL.


KEY WORDS: Hearing; Diagnosis; Hearing loss; Infant, newborn; Risk Factors; Otoacoustic emissions, spontaneous

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