Interventions and outcome measures for occupational hearing loss: two scoping reviews
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Audiology
Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is the second-most common form of hearing loss in the world. Many cases of NIHL occur within an occupational setting. Occupational hearing loss (OHL) is considered to be preventable, provided appropriate intervention strategies are employed. A scoping review was performed to discover intervention strategies for OHL discussed in the literature, and to identify common themes about their usage. A second scoping review was performed to identify appropriate outcome measures that can be used in future projects to assess the efficacy of interventional strategies. Commonly used intervention strategies included the use of hearing protection devices (HPD), the implementation of comprehensive hearing conservation programmes (HCP), administrative control strategies, audiometric monitoring, engineering control strategies, educational programmes, legislative control and pharmacological otoprotective drugs. Outcome measures used in OHL research included audiometric threshold shifts, level of noise exposure, HPD usage, number of incidences of OHL, changes in otoacoustic emissions, self-reported hearing loss complaints, tinnitus, attitudes and believes towards hearing loss prevention, prevalence of occupational injuries, number of OHL compensation claims lodged, blood pressure, number of falls in seniors, hyperacusis, occupational difficulties, changes in preventative actions undertaken, sources of income and work readiness.