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  Access statistics : Table of Contents
   2015| November-December  | Volume 17 | Issue 79  
    Online since November 17, 2015

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Attitudes toward noise, perceived hearing symptoms, and reported use of hearing protection among college students: Influence of youth culture
Jo Anne G Balanay, Gregory D Kearney
November-December 2015, 17(79):394-405
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.169701  PMID:26572699
The purpose of this study was to assess the attitude toward noise, perceived hearing symptoms, noisy activities that were participated in, and factors associated with hearing protection use among college students. A 44-item online survey was completed by 2,151 college students (aged 17 years and above) to assess the attitudes toward noise, perceived hearing symptoms related to noise exposure, and use of hearing protection around noisy activities. Among the participants, 39.6% experienced at least one hearing symptom, with ear pain as the most frequently reported (22.5%). About 80% of the participants were involved in at least one noise activity, out of which 41% reported the use of hearing protection. A large majority of those with ear pain, hearing loss, permanent tinnitus, and noise sensitivity was involved in attending a sporting event, which was the most reported noisy activity. The highest reported hearing protection use was in the use of firearms, and the lowest in discos/ dances. The reported use of hearing protection is associated with having at least one hearing symptom but the relationship is stronger with tinnitus, hearing loss, and ear pain (χ 2 = 30.5-43.5, P< 0.01) as compared to noise sensitivity (χ 2 = 3.8, P= 0.03); it is also associated with anti-noise attitudes, particularly in youth social events. Universities and colleges have important roles in protecting young adults' hearing by integrating hearing conservation topic in the college curriculum, promoting hearing health by student health services, involving student groups in noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) awareness and prevention, and establishing noise level limitations for all on-campus events.
  10,399 27 18
Are the noise levels acceptable in a built environment like Hong Kong?
Wai Ming To, Cheuk Ming Mak, Wai Leung Chung
November-December 2015, 17(79):429-439
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.169739  PMID:26572703
Governments all over the world have enacted environmental noise directives and noise control ordinances/acts to protect tranquility in residential areas. However, there is a lack of literature on the evaluation of whether the Acceptable Noise Levels (ANLs) stipulated in the directive/ordinance/act are actually achievable. The study aimed at measuring outdoor environmental noise levels in Hong Kong and identifying whether the measured noise levels are lower than the stipulated ANLs at 20 categories of residential areas. Data were gathered from a territory-wide noise survey. Outdoor noise measurements were conducted at 203 residential premises in urban areas, low-density residential areas, rural areas, and other areas. In total, 366 daytime hourly Leq outdoor noise levels, 362 nighttime hourly Leq outdoor noise levels, and 20 sets of daily, that is, 24 Leq,1-h outdoor noise levels were recorded. The mean daytime Leq,1-h values ranged 54.4-70.8 dBA, while the mean nighttime Leq,1-h values ranged 52.6-67.9 dBA. When the measured noise levels were compared with the stipulated ANLs, only three out of the 20 categories of areas had outdoor noise levels below ANLs during daytime. All other areas (and all areas during nighttime) were found to have outdoor noise levels at or above ANLs.
  8,091 27 8
Impact of overnight traffic noise on sleep quality, sleepiness, and vigilant attention in long-haul truck drivers: Results of a pilot study
Roland FJ Popp, Stefanie Maier, Siegfried Rothe, Jürgen Zulley, Tatjana Crönlein, Thomas C Wetter, Rainer Rupprecht, Göran Hajak
November-December 2015, 17(79):387-393
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.169698  PMID:26572698
This study aimed to evaluate the impact of traffic noise along the motorway on sleep quality, sleepiness, and vigilant attention in long-haul truck drivers. This was a randomized, crossover, within-subject controlled study. Healthy long-haul truck drivers spent 6 consecutive nights in a real truck berth with full sleep laboratory equipment. During 3 nights, subjects were exposed to replayed traffic noise alongside motorways, whereas the other 3 nights were without traffic noise. Polysomnography was recorded during the nights and numerous sleepiness tests and vigilance examinations were performed during the following standardized working day. Outcome measures were compared between noisy and silent nights using the paired Wilcoxon test. Ten healthy long-haul truck drivers with a mean age of 36.3 ± 7.3 years completed the study as planned. On noisy nights, subjects had greater latencies to the rapid eye movement (REM) phase (90 ± 32 min vs 69 ± 16 min, P = 0.074) and higher percentages of sleep stage 1 (13.7 ± 5.5% vs 11.2 ± 4.4%; P = 0.059). Subjects also rated their sleep quality as having been better during nights without noise (28.1 ± 3.7 vs 30.3 ± 6.2, P = 0.092). The impact of these differences on daytime sleepiness and vigilance was rather low; however, mean Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS) scores measured during the course of the following day were higher on six out of eight occasions after noisy nights. The effects of overnight traffic noise on sleep quality are detectable but unlikely to have any major impact on the vigilant attention and driving performance of long haul-truck drivers with low nocturnal noise sensitivity. This might not be true for subgroups prone to sleeping disorders.
  7,142 30 8
Hearing loss and tinnitus in rock musicians: A Norwegian survey
Carl Christian Lein Størmer, Einar Laukli, Erik Harry Høydal, Niels Christian Stenklev
November-December 2015, 17(79):411-421
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.169708  PMID:26572701
Our focus in this study was to assess hearing thresholds and the prevalence and characteristics of tinnitus in a large group of rock musicians based in Norway. A further objective was to assess related factors such as exposure, instrument category, and the preventive effect of hearing protection. The study was a cross-sectional survey of rock musicians selected at random from a defined cohort of musicians. A random control group was included for comparison. We recruited 111 active musicians from the Oslo region, and a control group of 40 nonmusicians from the student population at the University of TromsØ. The subjects were investigated using clinical examination, pure tone audiometry, tympanometry, and a questionnaire. We observed a hearing loss in 37.8% of the rock musicians. Significantly poorer hearing thresholds were seen at most pure-tone frequencies in musicians than controls, with the most pronounced threshold shift at 6 kHz. The use of hearing protection, in particular custom-fitted earplugs, has a preventive effect but a minority of rock musicians apply them consistently. The degree of musical performance exposure was inversely related to the degree of hearing loss in our sample. Bass and guitar players had higher hearing thresholds than vocalists. We observed a 20% prevalence of chronic tinnitus but none of the affected musicians had severe tinnitus symptomatology. There was no statistical association between permanent tinnitus and hearing loss in our sample. We observed an increased prevalence of hearing loss and tinnitus in our sample of Norwegian rock musicians but the causal relationship between musical exposure and hearing loss or tinnitus is ambiguous. We recommend the use of hearing protection in rock musicians.
  5,699 21 9
Association between polymorphism of interleukin-6 in the region -174G/C and tinnitus in the elderly with a history of occupational noise exposure
Marcelo Yugi Doi, Ana Carolina Marcotti Dias, Regina Célia Poly-Frederico, Maira Gabriela Sasso Rosa Maria, Maria Nazaré de Oliveira, Luciana Lozza de Moraes Marchiori
November-December 2015, 17(79):406-410
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.169703  PMID:26572700
Tinnitus is a symptom usually related to cochlear change that may arise from noise exposure and induces expression of proinflammatory cytokines including interleukin-6 (IL6). This study aimed to evaluate the association between the polymorphism of the IL6 gene in the region 174G/C and tinnitus in elderly with history of occupational noise exposure. Settings and Design: This was a cross-sectional study with a sample of 179 independent elderly individuals aged >60 years. Information on exposure to occupational noise was obtained by interviews. Audiological evaluation was performed using pure tone audiometry and genotyped through polymerase chain reaction by restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). Data were analyzed using the chi-square test and the odds ratio (OR), with the significance level set at 5%. Among the study subjects, 24.6% were homozygous for the G allele, 39.7% were homozygous for the C allele, and 35.8% were heterozygous for IL6 (P > 0.05). Of these, 33.5% reported noise exposure history, with 42.5% having tinnitus. We found significant association between the genotype and allele frequencies of the IL6 −174 gene (rs1800795) and tinnitus among the elderly with history of exposure to occupational noise (P = 0.03). The elderly with the C allele were less likely to have tinnitus associated with history of exposure to occupational noise [OR = 0.167, confidence interval (CI) 95% 0.167-0.749; P = 0.004] when compared to those carrying the G allele. This study suggests that there is an association between polymorphisms in the IL6 gene at region - 174G/C and susceptibility to tinnitus.
  5,568 24 7
Effects of noise and mental task performance upon changes in cerebral blood flow parameters
Marta Nowakowska-Kotas, Anna Pokryszko-Dragan, Mirosław Brodowski, Mariusz Szydło, Ryszard Podemski
November-December 2015, 17(79):422-428
DOI:10.4103/1463-1741.169709  PMID:26572702
The objectives of this paper were to determine whether traffic noise influences the parameters of cerebral blood flow (CBF) measured by functional transcranial Doppler sonography (fTCD) during the performance of mental tasks, and to see whether impact of noise on CBF changes with age. The study comprised 36 healthy volunteers, 22 women and 14 men, aged 25-49 years. The fTCD was performed using a fixed 2-MHz probe, aiming for an evaluation of mean velocity (MFV) and the pulsatility index (PI) in the middle cerebral artery (MCA) on both sides. Subsequently, fTCD was monitored: At rest; during performance of the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT); during exposure to traffic noise; and during concomitant exposure to noise and PASAT performance. MFV and PI were compared for particular conditions and correlated with age. During exposure to noise, flow parameters did not change significantly. PASAT performance in silence increased MFV and decreased PI in MCA on both sides. During PASAT performance, on exposure to noise, MCV and PI changed significantly only in the left MCA. However, values of MFV were significantly lower during noise than in silence. Correlations with age were noted for velocities in the right MCA during PASAT performance in silence and for PI on both sides during PASAT performed in noise conditions. Noise impairs the CBF during mental tasks. A comparison of changes in CBF parameters correlated with age suggests that the involvement of the nondominant hemisphere in managing with noise effects increases with age.
  5,136 24 1