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Assessment of saccular function using cervical vestibular-evoked myogenic potentials in children with sensorineural hearing loss

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Abstract

Objectives

The aim of this work was to examine saccular function using cervical vestibular-evoked myogenic potentials (cVEMPs) in children with congenital or acquired sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL).

Study design

Descriptive cross-sectional study.

Participants and methods

This study was carried out on 30 children with different degrees of SNHL with normal middle ear function and 25 age-matched and sex-matched typically developing children. All the participants’ age ranged from 5 to 18 years. For each child, the following were administered: history taking, an otologic examination, a basic audiological evaluation in the form of pure tone audiometry and immittancemetry, air-conducted cVEMPs, and computed tomography scan of the temporal bone. The results obtained from the two groups were then compared. In addition, correlation studies between all the results obtained were carried out.

Results

There was a statistically nonsignificant difference between the patients and the controls in cVEMP P13 and N23 latencies, whereas the cVEMP P13–N23 amplitude and threshold results showed a highly significant difference. cVEMP measurements in relation to sex within the patient group showed that the cVEMP threshold was the only positive outcome that showed a significant difference, and was higher in females. There was a highly significant positive correlation between hearing loss and the cVEMP threshold among the patient groups with different degrees of hearing losses. In addition, there was a significant positive correlation between age and cVEMP P13 and N23 latencies among the patient group.

Conclusion

SNHL is associated with saccular dysfunction in the pediatric population in the form of decreased cVEMP P13–N23 amplitudes and elevated cVEMP thresholds. Females presented with higher cVEMP threshold values than men, and cVEMP latencies appear to increase with age. An increase in hearing loss is associated with an increase in the cVEMP threshold and cVEMP amplitude appears to decrease with hearing loss irrespective of its degree. We recommend the inclusion of cVEMPs in the battery of evaluation of children with SNHL to detect early subtle changes in saccular function. Future research focusing on the genes causing SNHL and its relation to VEMP findings should be carried out.

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Correspondence to Mona H. Selim.

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Selim, M.H., El-Abd, S.M., El-Minawi, M.S. et al. Assessment of saccular function using cervical vestibular-evoked myogenic potentials in children with sensorineural hearing loss. Egypt J Otolaryngol 28, 234–241 (2012). https://doi.org/10.7123/01.EJO.0000418053.78780.0c

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.7123/01.EJO.0000418053.78780.0c

Keywords

  • cochlea
  • pure tone audiometry
  • saccule
  • sensorineural hearing loss
  • sternocleidomastoid muscle
  • vestibular-evoked myogenic potentials