Article  |   December 2009
Familial Aggregation of Age-Related Hearing Loss in an Epidemiological Study of Older Adults
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Laura A. Raynor
    University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
  • James S. Pankow
    University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
  • Michael B. Miller
    University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
  • Guan-Hua Huang
    National Chiao Tung University, Hsinchu, Taiwan
  • Dayna Dalton
    University of Wisconsin—Madison
  • Ronald Klein
    University of Wisconsin—Madison
  • Barbara E. K. Klein
    University of Wisconsin—Madison
  • Karen J. Cruickshanks
    University of Wisconsin—Madison
  • Contact author: Laura Raynor, University of Minnesota, Division of Epidemiology & Community Health, 1300 S. Second Street, Suite 300, Minneapolis, MN 55454-1015. E-mail: rayno007@umn.edu.
Hearing Disorders / Special Populations / Older Adults & Aging
Article   |   December 2009
Familial Aggregation of Age-Related Hearing Loss in an Epidemiological Study of Older Adults
American Journal of Audiology December 2009, Vol.18, 114-118. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2009/08-0035)
History: Accepted 27 Apr 2009 , Received 12 Nov 2008
American Journal of Audiology December 2009, Vol.18, 114-118. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2009/08-0035)
History: Accepted 27 Apr 2009 , Received 12 Nov 2008

Purpose: To estimate the genetic contributions to presbycusis.

Method: Presbycusis was assessed by audiometric measurements at 3 waves of the population-based Epidemiology of Hearing Loss Study (EHLS). Measurements from the most recent hearing examination were used, at which time the subjects (3,510 participants from the EHLS study) were between 48 and 100 years of age. Heritability of presbycusis was estimated using maximum likelihood methods in 973 biological relative pairs from 376 families. Familial aggregation was also evaluated by tetrachoric correlations, odds ratios, and lambda statistics in 594 sibling pairs from 373 sibships.

Results: The prevalence of presbycusis conformed to previous research, increasing with age and male sex. Heritability estimates for presbycusis adjusted for age, sex, education level, and exposure to work noise exceeded 50%, and siblings of an affected relative were at 30% higher risk. When stratified by sex, estimates of familial aggregation were higher in women than men.

Conclusions: There is evidence that genetic factors contribute to age-related hearing loss in this population-based sample. The familial aggregation is stronger in women than in men.

Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire American Journal of Audiology content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access

Related Articles

Hearing Status in Older Persons: A Significant Determinant of Depression and Loneliness? Results From the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam
American Journal of Audiology December 2013, Vol.22, 316-320. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2013/12-0069)
Auditory Training: Evidence for Neural Plasticity in Older Adults
SIG 6 Perspectives on Hearing and Hearing Disorders: Research and Diagnostics May 2013, Vol.17, 37-57. doi:10.1044/hhd17.1.37
An Introduction to the Second Starkey Research Summit
American Journal of Audiology December 2012, Vol.21, 329-330. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2012/12-0041)
Older Adults and Hearing Help-Seeking Behaviors
American Journal of Audiology December 2012, Vol.21, 331-337. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2012/12-0028)
Effect of Rate-Alteration on Speech Perception in Noise in Older Adults With Normal Hearing and Hearing Impairment
American Journal of Audiology June 2012, Vol.21, 22-32. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2011/10-0023)