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Article

Increased Risk of Sensorineural Hearing Loss as a Result of Exposure to Air Pollution

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Department of Medical Research, Tungs’ Taichung Metroharbor Hospital, Taichung 43503, Taiwan
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Graduate Institute of Biomedical Sciences, China Medical University, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
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General Education Center, Jen-Teh Junior College of Medicine, Nursing and Management, Miaoli 35664, Taiwan
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Department of Otolaryngology, Tungs’ Taichung Metroharbor Hospital, Taichung 43503, Taiwan
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College of Medicine, The School of Chinese Medicine for Post Baccalaureate, I-Shou University (Yancho Campus), Kaohsiung 84001, Taiwan
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Department of Chinese Medicine, E-DA Hospital, Kaohsiung 82445, Taiwan
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Department of Chinese Medicine, E-DA Cancer Hospital, Kaohsiung 82445, Taiwan
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Center for Molecular Medicine, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
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Department of Biotechnology, Asia University, Taichung 41354, Taiwan
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Department of Pediatrics, Department of Medical Research, Tungs’ Taichung Metroharbor Hospital, Taichung 43503, Taiwan
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Department of Rehabilitation, Jen-Teh Junior College of Medicine, Nursing and Management, Miaoli 35664, Taiwan
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Department of Thoracic Surgery, Chung Shan Medical University Hospital, Taichung 40201, Taiwan
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Management Office for Health Data, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
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Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Mackay Medical College, New Taipei City 252, Taiwan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
First authors.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(6), 1969; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17061969
Received: 23 January 2020 / Revised: 3 March 2020 / Accepted: 11 March 2020 / Published: 17 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Exposures and Hearing Loss)
Whether exposure to air pollution is associated with developing sensorineural hearing loss (SHL) remains controversial. Using data from the National Health Insurance Research Database, we recruited a total of 75,767 subjects aged older than 20 years with no history of SHL from 1998 to 2010, and they were followed up until SHL was observed, they withdrew from the National Health Insurance program, or the study ended. The subjects were evenly exposed to low-level, mid-level, and high-level carbon monoxide (CO) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2). The incidence rate ratio of SHL for patients exposed to high-level CO was 1.24 (95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.14–1.36). The NO2 pollutants increased the incidence rate ratios of SHL in mid-level NO2 and high-level NO2 exposures by 1.10 (95% CI = 1.10–1.32) and 1.36 (95% CI = 1.24–1.49) times, respectively. The adjusted hazard ratio (adj. HR) of SHL in patients exposed to high-level CO was 1.45 (95% CI = 1.31–1.59), relative to that of patients exposed to low-level CO. Compared to patients exposed to low-level NO2, patients exposed to mid-level NO2 (adj. HR = 1.40, 95% CI = 1.27–1.54) and high-level NO2 (adj. HR = 1.63, 95% CI = 1.48–1.81) had a higher risk of developing SHL. The increased risk of SHL following the increased concentrations of air pollutants (CO and NO2) was statistically significant in this study. In conclusion, the subjects’ exposure to air pollution exhibited a significantly higher risk of developing SHL in Taiwan. View Full-Text
Keywords: air pollution; sensorineural hearing loss; National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD); hazard ratio air pollution; sensorineural hearing loss; National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD); hazard ratio
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MDPI and ACS Style

Chang, K.-H.; Tsai, S.C.-S.; Lee, C.-Y.; Chou, R.-H.; Fan, H.-C.; Lin, F.C.-F.; Lin, C.-L.; Hsu, Y.-C. Increased Risk of Sensorineural Hearing Loss as a Result of Exposure to Air Pollution. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 1969. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17061969

AMA Style

Chang K-H, Tsai SC-S, Lee C-Y, Chou R-H, Fan H-C, Lin FC-F, Lin C-L, Hsu Y-C. Increased Risk of Sensorineural Hearing Loss as a Result of Exposure to Air Pollution. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(6):1969. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17061969

Chicago/Turabian Style

Chang, Kuang-Hsi, Stella C.-S. Tsai, Chang-Yin Lee, Ruey-Hwang Chou, Hueng-Chuen Fan, Frank C.-F. Lin, Cheng-Li Lin, and Yi-Chao Hsu. 2020. "Increased Risk of Sensorineural Hearing Loss as a Result of Exposure to Air Pollution" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 6: 1969. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17061969

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