30 July 2019

Depressive symptoms increase with the degree of hearing loss

A study among groups of Hispanics in the US shows that the risk of depressive symptoms increases with the degree of hearing loss.

An American study has found that the odds of having these depressive symptoms increased 1.44 times for every 20 dB of hearing loss.

Compared with the odds for individuals with normal hearing (0 dB), the odds of having clinically significant depressive symptoms was 1.81 times as high in individuals with mild hearing loss with a median threshold of 32.5 dB, 2.38 times as high in individuals with moderate hearing loss with a median threshold of 47.5 dB and 4.3 times as high in individuals with severe hearing loss with a median threshold of 80 dB.

Data from Hispanic communities

The study used 2008-2011 Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos data collected in Miami, Florida, San Diego, California, Chicago, Illinois and the Bronx, New York in the US. The study consisted of 5,328 Hispanic adults aged 50 years or older and was conducted from March 2018 to September 2018.

4,387 (82.3%) of the participants, the majority, had no hearing loss, 749 (14.1%) had mild hearing loss, 143 (2.7%) had moderate hearing loss and 49 (0.9%) had moderately severe or worse hearing loss.

The study, “Association of Audiometric Age-Related Hearing Loss With Depressive Symptoms Among Hispanic Individuals”, was published in the journal JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery

Source: JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery

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