Hearing impairment is defined as the reduced ability to recognize sounds. Regular clinical examination of the neonates cannot simply diagnose the hearing impairment in them. Identification of the high risk factors in the maternal history and detailed examination of newborns enables the health care professional to provide timely and appropriate monitoring and treatment Various categories of risk factors for the NICU admission are maternal history (preeclampsia/hypertension, diabetes /gestational diabetes, previous caesarean section), antenatal (BMI>30, diabetes mellitus, gestational diabetes type I and type II, maternal hypertensive disorder), factors associated with 1st stage of labor and with rupture of membranes. Hearing impairment in infants and children has been associated with lifelong deficiency in speech and language acquisition, poor academic performance, personal-social maladjustments and emotional difficulties. Hence there is great importance for early detection, reliable diagnosis, and timely intervention in hearing impaired infants to develop skills equivalent to their peers. Hearing screening programs in newborns helps in the detection of hearing impairment in the first days itself after birth. Techniques used for hearing assessment primarily include automated auditory brainstem responses and otoacoustic emissions that provide non invasive recordings of physiologic auditory activity and are easily performed in neonates and infants. Late identification of hearing impairment will make a delay in establishing effective communication which will affect the overall quality of life of neonates. Hence it is essential to have hearing assessment for the neonates and appropriate audiologic rehabilitation, if required. © RJPT All right reserved.
S. Dilip, Narayanan, A., and Roshni P. R., “Need for screening and early hearing detection and intervention system (EHDI) in a neonatal ICU setup”, Research Journal of Pharmacy and Technology, vol. 13, no. 4, pp. 2000-2004, 2020.