Screening of the newborn baby’s ability to hear. Newborn screening of hearing is done with automated auditory brainstem response tests or, less often, with what are called otoacoustic emission or conventional auditory brainstem response tests. The aim is to detect those babies with hearing deficits and teach them sign language in infancy or give them hearing aids or cochlear implants.
The general purpose of all newborn screening tests is to detect treatable diseases. Most of these disorders are genetic (inherited). Which screening tests should be done is decided in the U.S. on a state-by-state basis. The most common screening tests now include those for hypothyroidism (underactivity of the thyroid gland), PKU (phenylketonuria), galactosemia, and sickle cell disease. The addition of a hearing test to the battery of newborn screening now appears to make medical and economic sense.
As of 1999, only a handful of states in the U.S. mandated newborn hearing screening and only about 15% of all newborns were tested for their hearing in the hospital where they were born.
The overall rate of hearing loss found in one study in the U.S. was about 1 in 330 newborns. The frequency of congenital hearing loss (hearing loss at birth) was 260 per 100,000 births. This is a much higher incidence than for other conditions routinely screened for in newborns.
the right heart and the left heart. The right heart consists of the right atrium, which receives deoxygenated blood from the body, and the right ventricle, which pumps the deoxygenated blood to the lungs under low pressure; and the left heart, which consists of the left atrium, which receives oxygenated blood from the lung, and […]
- Heart block
A blockage in the conduction of the normal electrical impulses in the heart. Heart block is not uncommon and is detected with an electrocardiogram. Heart block occurs from degeneration or scarring of the electrical pathways in the heart muscle, either naturally or as a result of disease. Heart block typically requires no treatment, but can […]
- Heart attack
The death of heart muscle due to the loss of blood supply. The loss of blood supply is usually caused by a complete blockage of a coronary artery, one of the arteries that supplies blood to the heart muscle. Death of the heart muscle, in turn, causes chest pain and electrical instability of the heart […]
- Heart conduction system
The electrical conduction system that controls the heart rate. This system generates electrical impulses and conducts them throughout the muscle of the heart, stimulating the heart to contract and pump blood. Among the major elements in the cardiac conduction system are the sinus node, atrioventricular node, and the autonomic nervous system. The sinus node is […]
- Heart disease
Angina; Arrhythmia; Congenital heart disease; Coronary artery disease (CAD); Dilated cardiomyopathy; Heart attack (myocardial infarction); Heart failure; Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; Mitral regurgitation; Mitral valve prolapse; and Pulmonary stenosis.