hearing loss

INTRODUCTION

Presbyacusis, a chronic health-related condition described as hearing loss associated with aging, presents as insidious, progressive, high-frequency, sensorineural hearing impairment. The major complaint of older adults with presbyacusis is communicative difficulty, particularly in the presence of background noise and/or reverberation. Presbyacusis has the ability to influence communication ability to the point where the older adult may be handicapped in a psychosocial (i.e., social, personal, emotional) manner. This condition is evident in the existing literature, where previous studies have shown that older adults with presbyacusis exhibit increased levels of depression, social isolation, loneliness, cultural detachment, and feelings of danger to personal safety. As a result, presbyacusis may, in turn, affect an individual’s degree of functional (i.e., physical and/or mental) health status and health-related quality of life (HRQoL).

Although data are available from previous studies that have determined the influence of hearing impairment, limited investigations exist that have attempted to explore HRQoL in older adults with hearing loss from culturally diverse backgrounds (i.e., African-American, Hispanic-American, Asian-American, Pacific Islander, Native-American). In light of the hearing impairment prevalence rate among older adults, reported as low as 20% and as high as 45%, ancillary research efforts are needed to explore the effects of hearing loss in more diverse populations. Given this circumstance, the impetus for this investigation was to assess health status in older African-American adults with documented hearing loss. cialis canadian pharmacy