Does Exposure to Noise During Military Service Affect the Progression of Hearing Loss with Increasing Age?
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Moore, B., & Lowe, D. A. (2022). Does Exposure to Noise During Military Service Affect the Progression of Hearing Loss with Increasing Age?. Trends Hear https://doi.org/10.1177/23312165221076940
It is traditionally believed that the effects of exposure to noise cease once the exposure itself has ceased. If this is the case, exposure to noise relatively early in life, for example during military service, should not affect the subsequent progression of hearing loss. However, recent data from studies using animals suggest that noise exposure can accelerate the subsequent progression of hearing loss. This paper presents new longitudinal data obtained from 29 former male military personnel. Audiograms obtained at the end of military service were compared with those obtained at least five years later. Rates of change of hearing threshold level (HTL) in dB/year were compared with those expected from ISO7029 (2017) for men at the 50th percentile. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that noise exposure during military service accelerates the progression of hearing loss for frequencies where the hearing loss is absent or mild at the end of military service, by about 1.7 dB/year on average for frequencies from 3 to 8 kHz, but has no effect on or slows the progression of hearing loss for frequencies where the hearing loss exceeds about 50 dB. Acceleration appears to occur over a wide frequency range, including 1 kHz. There remains a need for further longitudinal studies using larger sample sizes. Longitudinal studies are also needed to establish whether exposure to other types of sounds, for example at rock concerts or from work in heavy industries, affects the subsequent progression of hearing loss.
Medical Research Council (G0701870)
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/23312165221076940
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/332695
Attribution 4.0 International
Licence URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/