Monitoring Children At-Risk for Progressive Hearing Loss Considerations for managing babies with risk factors for late onset or progressive hearing loss are extremely important. The timing and number of hearing re-evaluations for children with these risk factors should be customized and individualized depending on the relative likelihood of a subsequent delayed-onset hearing loss.
The JCIH 2007 Position Paper recommends an inclusive strategy of surveillance of all children within the medical home on the pediatric periodicity schedule.
All families should receive informational materials that discuss major milestones in normal speech and language development and risk factors for hearing loss in their native language.
Families of infants at high risk should receive additional information on late-onset or progressive hearing loss as well as local diagnostic resource centers.
The first monitoring appointment for infants at-risk for progressive loss should be made prior to discharge from the birth hospital or NICU.
Infants who pass the neonatal screening but have any of the risk factors on the list not in bold print should have at least 1 diagnostic audiology assessment by 24 to 30 months of age.
Risk indicators that are in bold on the NHSR form are of greater concern for delayed-onset hearing loss and will need closer audiologic monitoring. Closer monitoring would include audiological testing every 6 months up to age 3 years and annually after that time.
See the Joint Committee on Infant Hearing for a list of risk indicators associated with permanent congenital, delayed-onset or progressive hearing loss in childhood.