Lerman–Garber I et al. – Patients with early onset type 2 diabetes (T2DM) and poor glycemic control have an increased prevalence of subclinical hearing loss and impaired auditory brainstem responses. Hearing impairment may be an under–recognized complication of diabetes.Methods
- Forty-six consecutive patients with early onset type 2 diabetes (T2DM) and forty-seven age-matched controls with rheumatoid arthritis were included.
- All subjects completed clinical, serologic and auditory assessments.
- Patients with T2DM had a mean age of 42±6 years and mean disease duration of 11±6 years.
- Microalbuminuria was present in 26.1%, symptomatic peripheral neuropathy in 23.9%, and proliferative retinopathy in 26.1%.
- The prevalence of unilateral or bilateral hearing loss was significantly higher in diabetic rather than in RA patients (21.7% vs. 6.4%, p=0.01).
- Most cases were mild and involved high or acute tones.
- After multivariate analysis adjusting for age, there was a significant association between hearing loss and HbA1c (OR=1.3, IC95% 1.02-1.81, p=0.035).
- In diabetic patients the lengthening of the brainstem response was not significantly increased; however, the wave morphology was abnormal and/or the reproducibility was poor in 28% of the patients.