Among the most common chronic disorders of modern time, diabetes mellitus remains unique because of its multifactorial ramifications. Apart from the well-described association between congenital deafness and maternally inherited type of diabetes mellitus, the relationship between type 2 diabetes and hearing loss has been the subject of debate since Jordao reported a case of hearing loss with incipient diabetes coma almost 150 years ago. Documentation of this relationship among adult diabetics in developing countries (especially West Africa) where type 2 diabetes mellitus is prevalent has become imperative; hence this study.
1. To compare the hearing threshold levels among adult diabetes mellitus patients with non-diabetes mellitus subjects in south-western Nigeria.
2. To determine the type and severity of hearing loss among adult type 2 diabetic mellitus patients.
This was a 12 months prospective hospital based cross sectional study (December 2013- November 2014) of seventy consecutively selected adult diabetic patients and seventy age and sex matched non-diabetic control subjects.
The mean ages for the test and control groups were 48.4 years and 46.5 years respectively. Male to female ratio was 1:1. The Pure tone average as well as the hearing threshold levels for air and bone conduction was significantly higher for all frequencies tested except 0.25 KHz in the diabetic group compared to the non-diabetic control group.
Hearing threshold levels for adult diabetic patients are significantly higher than that of non-diabetic individual of a similar age.