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Otorinolaringologia 2007 September;57(3):99-104


language: Italian

Newborn hearing screening with otoacoustic emissions: our experience

Fusetti M., Fioretti A. B., Ottaviano I., Simaskou M., Eibenstein A., Melpignano G.

1 Dipartimento di Scienze Chirurgiche Insegnamento di Otorinolaringoiatria Università dell’Aquila, L’Aquila 2 Reparto di Neonatologia Casa di cura “Città di Roma”, Roma


Aim. The aim of the study was the early detection of hearing impairment, congenital or acquired, using a newborn hearing screening.
Methods. In the first step of the study, 1439 newborns were examined with transiently evoked otoacoustic emissions (TEOAE). For the hearing screening we have applied two different protocols, one for well babies (NIDO) and one for babies with audiological risk. TEOAE testing of well babies was performed during the first week of life: in case of PASS result the newborns terminated the study, while FAIL cases were referred for follow-up retest after two weeks. The newborns who resulted FAIL in the second step (TEOAE retest) were referred to ABR in four months. Babies with audiological risk were examined with TEOAE before discharge; in each case ABR testing was performed in the first four weeks of life.
Results. In the first step of protocol we obtained 1272 PASS (91%) and 128 FAIL (9%) from 1400 well babies. In the second step 73 (5.2%) newborns passed, 26 (1.8%) failed and 29 did not return to retest in the programmed follow-up. In one case the ABR testing revealed severe bilateral hearing loss. From the 39 babies with audiological risk, 29 were PASS and 10 FAIL. From these 10 cases 6 babies returned to retest and all 6 newborns had bilateral FAIL. In one case the ABR demonstrated a monolateral hearing loss.
Conclusion. Our program of newborn hearing screening detected two cases of hearing impairment. In comparison to other protocols with TEOAE recording, performed during the first 48 hours of life, we found a reduction of false positive with TEOAE recording performed during the first week of life.

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