Presbyacusis – A Review of Causes, Symptoms, and Management


Life expectancy of humans is on the rise with the world’s human population aging rapidly. According to a report from the US Census Bureau, nearly 24% of the current world population is above the age of 50. This is a phenomenal number. However, a common condition associated with old age is hearing loss due to degenerative processes.

Presbyacusis is a type of hearing loss that develops with age. This causes a greater burden on elderly patients considering they most likely already have failing eyesight. This article attempts to review the current scenario pertaining to presbyacusis with a review of current published literature on the subject.


Presbyacusis is defined as a type of progressive bilateral, symmetrical sensorineural hearing loss associated with aging. The hearing loss in question here is confined to higher frequencies. Presbyacusis is an added problem for the elderly, who have a tendency to compensate for their loss of vision through their intact sense of hearing. They even tend to become isolated and become a social recluse due to this problem. Among the changes that occur with progressing age, deterioration of hearing is the most expected and accepted decline in the quality of life. The impact of a decline in hearing could really be very significant, impacting the social, functional and psychological well-being of the patient (1). Some of these problems can still persist despite the use of appropriate hearing aids. A study in the UK revealed that nearly 75% of adults who had hearing loss were above the age of 60, and of those with greater than 45 dB sensorineural hearing loss, about 84% were over 60 years of age (2, 3).

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This entry was posted in Otolaryngology (ENT), Primary Care and tagged . Volume: .

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