Hearing loss and employment: A systematic review of the association between hearing loss and employment among adults

A. Shan, J. S. Ting, C. Price, A. M. Goman, A. Willink, N. S. Reed, C. L. Nieman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background Hearing loss affects over 1.3 billion individuals worldwide, with the greatest burden among adults. Little is known regarding the association between adult-onset hearing loss and employment.Methods Seven databases (PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, ABI/Inform Collection, Business Source Ultimate, Web of Science and Scopus) were searched through to October 2018. The key word terms used related to hearing loss and employment, excluding paediatric or congenital hearing loss and deaf or culturally deaf populations.Results The initial search resulted in 13 144 articles. A total of 7494 articles underwent title and abstract screening, and 243 underwent full-text review. Twenty-five articles met the inclusion criteria. Studies were set in 10 predominantly high-income countries. Seven of the 25 studies analysed regionally or nationally representative datasets and controlled for key variables. Six of these seven studies reported associations between hearing loss and employment.Conclusion The highest quality studies currently available indicate that adult-onset hearing loss is associated with unemployment. However, considerable heterogeneity exists, and more rigorous studies that include low-and middle-income countries are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)387-397
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Laryngology and Otology
Volume134
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2020

Keywords

  • Employment
  • Hearing Disorders
  • Hearing Loss
  • Presbycusis
  • Underemployment
  • Unemployment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology

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