ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
'Safe' Ozone Levels May Not Be for Some
Air Pollution May Raise Blood Pressure
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Ginger Can Ease Nausea From Chemotherapy Treatments
Insight on Herbals Eludes Doctors, Patients Alike
Yoga May Bring Calm to Breast Cancer Treatment
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Extra Pounds in Mid-Life Affect Later Mobility
Scientists Discover How Osteoarthritis Destroys Cartilage
Chronic Low Back Pain Is on the Rise
CANCER
Broccoli May Help Battle Breast Cancer
More Cancer Tests Mean More False-Positive Results
Smokeout '08: The Perfect Time to Quit
CAREGIVING
Organ Donation Policies Vary Among Children's Hospitals
Mild Flu Season Coming to a Close
Distance No Bar to Kidney Transplants in Remote Areas
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Drink a Little Wine, Live a Little Longer
Smog Tougher on the Obese
Salt Boosts Blood Pressure in High-Risk Patients
COSMETIC
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
DENTAL, ORAL
Gum Disease May Reactivate AIDS Virus
Study Links Osteoporosis Drugs to Jaw Trouble
Gum Care Helps Control Type 2 Diabetes and Its Complications
DIABETES
Exercise Protects Black Women From Type 2 Diabetes
Brown Rice Bests White for Diabetes Prevention
Diabetes Linked to Cognitive Problems
DIET, NUTRITION
The 3LS Wellness Program for Reversing Chronic Symptoms and Creating Lasting Health
Healthy Eating While On Vacation
Oregano Shown to be the Most Powerful Culinary Herb
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Scorpion Anti-Venom Speeds Children's Recovery
Disinfectants Can Boost Bacteria's Resistance to Treatment
Air Pollution Exposure May Slow Fetal Growth
EYE CARE, VISION
Nearly 18 Million Will Have Macular Degeneration by 2050
Statin Drugs Cause Eye Disorders
FDA Goes After Unapproved Eye Washes, Skin Ointments
FITNESS
Basketball Star Details His Struggle With Gout
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
School Phys. Ed. Injuries Up 150 Percent
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
GENERAL HEALTH
When It Comes to Lifting, the Pros Have Your Back
You Can Get Great Exercise In The Garden
Vitamin E Helps Treat Common Liver Disease
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
Irregular Heartbeat Tied to Alzheimer's Disease
Arteries Age Twice as Fast in Smokers
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Coconut Oil May Help Fight Childhood Pneumonia
Protect Your Kids From Swine Flu While at Camp
MEN'S HEALTH
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
Low Iron Levels Cut Cancer Risk in Men With PAD
Countdown to Hair Loss
MENTAL HEALTH
Shop 'Til You Drop: You May Feel Better
Consciousness Helps the Mind and Body Work Together
Massage Fosters Healing in Bereaved Relatives
PAIN
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
Acupuncture May Relieve Acid Indigestation In Pregnancy
SENIORS
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Rapid Weight Loss in Seniors Signals Higher Dementia Risk
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Lifting Weights Can Ease Arm Swelling in Breast Cancer Survivors
Iodine in Prenatal Vitamins Varies Widely
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Eye Problems, Hearing Loss May Be Linked

TUESDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- About 20 percent of children with sensorineural hearing loss also have eye disorders, a new study has found.

Sensorineural hearing loss, caused by damage to the inner ear or to the nerves that link the ear to the brain, affects up to three of every 1,000 children, according to background information in the study. Half of all cases in children are due to genetics, and one gene, GJB2, accounts for a large proportion of sensorineural hearing loss in whites.

For the study, Dr. Arun Sharma, of the University of Washington, Seattle, and colleagues reviewed data on 226 children with sensorineural hearing loss. Of that group, 49 (21.7 percent) had eye disorders, including 23 (10.2 percent) with refractive errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism, and 29 (12.8 percent) with non-refractive errors. The researchers also found that the cause of sensorineural hearing loss was syndromic -- meaning it was associated with other symptoms -- in 11 children (4.9 percent), and five (2.2 percent) had syndromes with related eye problems.

All of the children were offered genetic testing for mutations in the GJB2 gene. Of the 144 who had the screening, 27 (18.8 percent) had two mutated copies of the GJB2 gene, and one of the 27 (3.7 percent) had an eye disorder. No eye problems were found in the 11 children with a single mutated copy, but there were eye problems in 22 (20.8 percent) of the 106 children with no mutations.

"This is consistent with the impression that GJB2 mutations result in sensorineural hearing loss but not in additional anomalies or syndromes," the researchers wrote.

"A multidisciplinary approach is important in the evaluation and treatment of children with sensorineural hearing loss to ensure that their medical, education and social needs are met," the study concluded. "Ophthalmologic evaluation can be beneficial for patients by allowing ophthalmologists to diagnose (and possibly treat) co-existing disorders that affect vision and by helping otolaryngology to determine cause of sensorineural hearing loss."

The study was published in the February issue of the journal Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians has more about hearing loss in children.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: JAMA/Archives journals, news release, Feb. 16, 2009

Last Updated: Feb. 17, 2009

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