Author(s): Dalton DS, Schubert CR, Pinto A, Fischer ME, Huang GH, Klein BEK,Klein R, Pankow JS, Paulsen AJ, Tsai MY, Tweed TS, Cruickshanks KJ. Cadmium, obesity, and education, and the 10-year incidence of hearing impairment: The beaver dam offspring study. Laryngoscope. 2019 Aug 19. doi: 10.1002/lary.28244. [Epub ahead of print]
Journal: The Laryngoscope, Aug 2019
OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS To determine the 10-year incidence of hearing impairment (HI) and associated risk factors in the Beaver Dam Offspring Study (BOSS; 2004-present), a large middle-aged cohort followed for 10 years.
STUDY DESIGN Prospective cohort study.
METHODS Hearing thresholds were measured at baseline (2005-2008) and 5- (2010-2013) and 10-year (2015-2017) follow-up examinations. HI was defined as a pure-tone average >25 dB HL in either ear. BOSS participants free of HI at baseline with at least one follow-up examination (N = 2,065) were included. Potential risk factors evaluated included cardiovascular measures, health history, lifestyle factors, inflammatory markers, vitamins D and B12, lead, and cadmium.
RESULTS Participants were 21 to 79 years (mean age = 47.9 years) at baseline. The 10-year cumulative HI incidence was 17.4% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 15.7-19.2) and was twice as likely in men (24.4%, 95% CI: 21.5-27.7) than in women (12.2%, 95% CI: 10.3-14.3). In a multivariable adjusted model, age (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.48, 95% CI: 1.38-1.59, per 5 years), male sex (HR = 2.47, 95% CI: 1.91-3.18), less than a college education (HR = 1.35, 95% CI: 1.02-1.79), body mass index (HR = 1.03, 95% CI: 1.01-1.05, per kg/m2 ), and higher cadmium levels (HR = 1.42, 95% CI: 1.05-1.92, quintile 5 vs. quintiles 1-4) were associated with the 10-year cumulative incidence of HI. There was no association between high lead levels, vitamins D or B12, and 10-year incidence of HI.
CONCLUSIONS In addition to age and sex, obesity, education, and blood cadmium levels were associated with increased incidence of HI. These prospective results add to evidence that age-related HI is a multifactorial preventable disorder.