Otitis Media, Fluctuant Hearing Loss, and Speech-Language Outcomes A Preliminary Structural Equation Model Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2000
Otitis Media, Fluctuant Hearing Loss, and Speech-Language Outcomes
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lawrence D. Shriberg
    University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Sandy Friel-Patti
    University of Texas at Dallas
  • Peter Flipsen, Jr
    University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Roger L. Brown
    University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: shriberg@waisman.wisc.edu
  • Contact author: Lawrence D. Shriberg, PhD, The Phonology Project, Waisman Center on Mental Retardation and Human Development, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1500 Highland Avenue, Madison, WI 53705. Email: shriberg@waisman.wisc.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Hearing Disorders / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2000
Otitis Media, Fluctuant Hearing Loss, and Speech-Language Outcomes
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2000, Vol. 43, 100-120. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4301.100
History: Received March 3, 1998 , Accepted July 22, 1999
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2000, Vol. 43, 100-120. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4301.100
History: Received March 3, 1998; Accepted July 22, 1999

The goals of this study were to estimate the risk for lowered speech-language outcomes associated with early recurrent otitis media with effusion (OME) with and without hearing loss and to develop a preliminary descriptive-explanatory model for the findings. Three statistical approaches were used to assess associations among OME, hearing loss, and speech-language outcomes. Participants were a subsample of 70 children followed prospectively in the Dallas Cooperative Project on Early Hearing and Language Development (Friel-Patti & Finitzo, 1990). Findings indicated that hearing levels at 12–18 months were significantly associated with speech delay and low language outcomes at 3 years of age. The risk for subclinical or clinical speech delay at 3 years of age was 2% for children with less than 20 dB average hearing levels at 12–18 months and 33% for children with greater than 20 dB average hearing levels at 12–18 months. A structural equation model (Jöreskog & Sörbom, 1993) indicated that the significant and substantial effects of hearing levels at 12–18 months on speech status at 3 years were significantly mediated by language status at 3 years. Discussion includes implications of these findings for alternative speech perception models linking early OME and hearing loss to later speech-language disorder.

Acknowledgments
Preparation of this report was supported by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, National Institutes of Health (DC00496). We thank the following people for their significant contributions to this paper: Chad Allen, Diane Austin, Lori Betourne, Karen Cruickshanks, Terese Finitzo, Jane McSweeny, Jean Moore, and Carmen Rasmussen. We also thank the editor, associate editor, and four reviewers for their extremely valuable editorial critique. Copies of relevant technical reports are available at the Phonology Project web site: http://www.waisman.wisc.edu/phonology/.
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