Prevalence of Auditory Problems in Children With Feeding and Swallowing Disorders Purpose Although an interdisciplinary approach is recommended for assessment and management of feeding or swallowing difficulties, audiologists are not always included in the interdisciplinary team. The purpose of this study is to report the prevalence of middle ear and hearing problems in children with feeding and swallowing disorders and to ... Research Article
Research Article  |   May 25, 2017
Prevalence of Auditory Problems in Children With Feeding and Swallowing Disorders
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Vishakha Waman Rawool
    Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders, West Virginia University, Morgantown
  • Disclosure: The author has declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The author has declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Vishakha Rawool: vwrawool@mail.wvu.edu
  • Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray
    Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray×
  • Associate Editor: Todd Ricketts
    Associate Editor: Todd Ricketts×
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   May 25, 2017
Prevalence of Auditory Problems in Children With Feeding and Swallowing Disorders
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, May 2017, Vol. 60, 1436-1447. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-H-16-0217
History: Received June 6, 2016 , Revised October 14, 2016 , Accepted November 28, 2016
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, May 2017, Vol. 60, 1436-1447. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-H-16-0217
History: Received June 6, 2016; Revised October 14, 2016; Accepted November 28, 2016

Purpose Although an interdisciplinary approach is recommended for assessment and management of feeding or swallowing difficulties, audiologists are not always included in the interdisciplinary team. The purpose of this study is to report the prevalence of middle ear and hearing problems in children with feeding and swallowing disorders and to compare this prevalence with that in typical children.

Method A total of 103 children were included in the study: 44 children with feeding and swallowing disorders and 59 children without any such disorders. Audiological examinations included case-history information, visualization of the ear canals through otoscopy, middle ear evaluation through tympanometry, and hearing screenings using an audiometer.

Results The odds of excessive cerumen (p = .0000, small effect size), middle ear dysfunction (p = .0148, small effect size), and hearing screening failure (p = .0000, large effect size) were 22.14%, 2.97%, and 13.5% higher, respectively, in children with feeding and swallowing disorders compared with typically developing children.

Conclusion The significantly higher prevalence of hearing problems in children with feeding and swallowing disorders compared with typically developing children suggests that inclusion of an audiologist on the interdisciplinary team is likely to improve overall interventional outcomes for children with feeding and swallowing disorders.

Acknowledgments
This research was partially supported by a grant for the LEND Project (#MCJ-549170) from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (Title V, Social Security Act), Health Resources and Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services. The author would also like to thank Monica Andis, coordinator of the Feeding and Swallowing Clinic at the Center for Excellence in Disabilities, for asking the parents referred to the clinic if they would be interested in an audiological screening of their child.
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