Korean J Fam Pract. 2017; 7(4): 458-464  https://doi.org/10.21215/kjfp.2017.7.4.458
Hypertension and Hearing Impairment in the Korean Adults: Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2010-2012
Seung-Hee Choi, Soo-Young Kim*, Hyun-Gul Park, Ji-Soo Seo, Ki-Young Lim
Department of Family Medicine, Hallym University Kangdong Sacred Heart Hospital, Seoul, Korea
Soo-Young Kim
Tel: +82-2-2224-2406, Fax: +82-2-2224-2409
E-mail: hallymfm@gmail.com
Received: June 13, 2016; Revised: September 13, 2016; Accepted: September 19, 2016; Published online: August 20, 2017.
© Korean Academy of Family Medicine. All rights reserved.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract
Background: Hypertension has been proposed as a risk factor for hearing impairment. However, the previous studies regarding the association between hypertension and hearing impairment are inconsistent, and there are no studies conducted on Korean adults examining hypertension as the main variable.
Methods: We analyzed 7,248 participants who had their blood pressure and hearing assessed in the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2010–2012. We categorized hearing impairment by frequency (low/mid, high) and severity (mild, moderate to severe) using pure tone audiometry. A multivariable logistic regression analysis examining the effect of hypertension on hearing impairment was conducted.
Results: In the univariate analysis, both systolic (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) increased significantly with the level of hearing impairment (low/mid frequencies SBP P-trend <0.001, DBP P-trend <0.01; high frequencies SBP P-trend <0.001, DBP P-trend <0.001). The logistic regression analysis showed that hypertension had significant effects on hearing impairment when analyzing only hypertension as the independent variable (low/mid frequencies odds ratio [OR]: 2.03, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.65–2.49; high frequencies OR: 2.15, 95% CI: 1.88–2.45). However, no significant association between hypertension and hearing impairment was observed after adjusting for age, sex, and other confounding variables.
Conclusion: We found that no significant association exists between hypertension and hearing impairment in Korean adults.
Keywords: Hypertension; Blood Pressure; Hearing Impairment
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