Women with hearing loss 'more likely to have premature or underweight babies'

27 September 2016

A new study has indicated that babies born to women with hearing loss are significantly more likely to be premature or of low birth weight.

Led by Brandeis University, the research examined data from the 2008-2011 Nationwide Inpatient Sample of the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project. Of nearly 18 million deliveries monitored in the study, about 10,500 were among women with hearing loss.

Births among women in this group were shown to be considerably more likely to be premature and underweight, which could be due to the coexisting health issues these women often have, as well as the challenges they face in accessing care.

Dr Monika Mitra of the Lurie Institute for Disability Policy at Brandeis University said these findings could be explained by "patient-provider communication, potential biological factors, interpersonal violence, health knowledge and health literacy among people with hearing loss, and the general dissatisfaction of people with hearing loss with their healthcare".

Based on these findings, the researchers called for fresh efforts to be made to develop new clinical interventions and maternal and child health programmes specifically targeting women with hearing loss.

Posted by Philip Briggs


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