Background: Hearing impairment is a common sensory impairment affecting all age group worldwide.
Aims: This study aimed at determining the prevalence, sociodemographic features, aetiology, audiometry findings, impact on quality of life and management of hearing impairment in a tertiary health institution in Ado-Ekiti, Nigeria.
Materials and Methods: This was a prevalence hospital-based study of patients with complaints of hearing impairment in the ear, nose and throat department of Ekiti state university teaching hospital, Ado Ekiti.
The study was carried out from May 2017 to April 2018. Consent was obtained from the patients/parents/guardian.
Data were obtained by using pretested interviewers assisted questionnaire.
All the data obtained were collated, documented and analyzed using SPSS version 18.
Results: Prevalence of hearing impairment was 21.2%. There were 36.5% males and 63.5% female with a male to female ratio of 1:1.5. Bilateral hearing impairment was predominant and accounted for 51.9%.
Common aetiologic factors of hearing impairment among the patients were; 20.2% earwax impaction, 13.5% ototoxicity, 12.5% otitis media, 11.5% presbyacusis, 11.1% otitis externa and 10.1% febrile illnesses.
Common clinical features were earwax, earache, hard of hearing/ear blockage, ear discharge and tinnitus in 49.5%, 45.2%, 40.4%, 36.5% and 29.8% respectively.
The most Common type of hearing impairment was a sensorineural hearing loss in 46.2%. Type A tympanometry (normal) was the commonest findings in 47.1%. Pure tone audiometry revealed mild, moderate and moderate-severe hearing impairment to be 44.7%, 27.9%, and 20.2% respectively.
Common effect on quality of life was the embarrassment, aggressiveness, social dysfunction and poor academic performance of 13.9%, 11.5%, 10.1% and 6.7%.
Majority of the patients in 63.5% had prehospital treatment. Conservative treatment was done in 26.9%. The surgery/procedure were done in 47.6%. Amplification and speech therapy in 13.5% and 6.7% respectively.
Conclusion: Hearing impairment is a hidden and common otologic disease with significant associated negative effect on quality of life in Ado- Ekiti, Nigeria.