Prevalence and clinical aspects of hearing loss among the South Korean adolescent: Data from a population-based study

Shin Hye Kim, Eun Shil Cha, Heung Eog Cha, Jae Jun Song, Sung Won Chae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)


Objectives: Slight/mild hearing loss is detrimental to communication and academic achievements. This study aimed to describe the prevalence of hearing loss, and to investigate the factors related to noise-induced hearing loss among South Korean adolescent. Methods: As a population-based retrospective study, 1845 South Korean adolescents aged from 12 to 19 years were analyzed using the data from Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey V (KNHANES V, 2010–2012). The prevalence of hearing loss according to the side, severity, and frequency was calculated. For assessing the noise-induced hearing loss in adolescent, the prevalence of hearing loss only in high-frequency (onlyHFHL, defined as 1) thresholds at 0.5 and 1 kHz of ≤15 dB HL, and 2) maximal thresholds at 3, 4, or 6 kHz ≥ 15 dB HL higher than the highest threshold for 0.5 and 1 kHz) was analyzed. Moreover, the relevance of onlyHFHL in context of sociodemographic factors and noise exposure history was evaluated. Results: The prevalence of unilateral and bilateral hearing loss based on the average of six frequencies (0.5, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 kHz) in South Korean adolescents were 8.56% and 1.03%, respectively, and most cases were hearing loss with slight/mild degree. The prevalence of unilateral and bilateral onlyHFHL were 32.74% and 5.53%, respectively. Factors found to be associated with onlyHFHL were sex (female) and household income (high). Conclusions: According to this population-based study, the prevalence of slight/mild hearing loss and onlyHFHL in the South Korean adolescents were considerably high. With knowledge of the factors related with onlyHFHL, paying more attention to slight/mild hearing loss will be helpful in preventing hearing loss in adolescents.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109698
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Jan


  • Adolescent
  • Hearing loss
  • Prevalence
  • Risk factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Otorhinolaryngology

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