Ghana Medical Journal

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Hearing impairment among chronic kidney disease patients on haemodialysis at a tertiary hospital in Ghana

Joseph O. Boateng, Neal Boafo, Charlotte Osafo, Samuel Anim-Sampong


Background: Chronic kidney disease is a major public health challenge, globally. Inadequate excretion of metabolic waste products by the kidneys results in circulation of these toxic materials in the body. This can cause damage to tissues and organ systems including the auditory system which can lead to hearing loss.

Aim: The study was aimed at determining the prevalence, degrees and types of hearing impairment among Chronic kidney disease patients on haemodialysis in Ghana.

Methods: A case-control study involving 50 Chronic Kidney disease patients and 50 age and gender-matched control group was carried out at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH). A structured questionnaire was administered to obtain basic socio-demographic data and case history of the participants. Audiological assessment was performed using a test battery comprising otoscopy, tympanometry and pure tone audiometry in a soundproof booth.

Results: Higher hearing thresholds were recorded across all the frequencies tested among the case group than the control group (p < 0.05) in both ears. Only sensorineural hearing loss was identified among the cases. The prevalence of hearing loss was 32% among the case group and 12% among the control group. No significant association was observed between hearing loss and duration of Chronic kidney disease (p = 0.16), gender of Chronic kidney disease patient and hearing loss (p = 0.88), and duration of Chronic kidney disease and degree of hearing loss (p=0.31).

Conclusion: Our study showed that Chronic Kidney disease patients on haemodialysis are at higher risk of experiencing hearing loss.

Keywords: Hearing loss, chronic kidney disease, prevalence, haemodialysis, hearing threshold
Funding: None declared

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