The ENT specialists at Narayana Health treat a huge range of ailments related to the ear, nose, throat, neck, larynx, mouth, sinuses, and face. The most common of these is hearing impairment or loss, in other words ‘deafness’.
Deafness means loss of hearing that may be partial or total. Hearing impairment cannot be seen and hence its effects are not visible to others, so the deaf suffer in silence. Unlike blindness, deafness often provokes ridicule rather than sympathy.
The WHO definition of “deafness” refers to both complete and partial loss of ability to hear i.e., the complete loss of hearing ability in one or both the ears. The cases included in this category will be those having a hearing loss of more than 90 dB in the better ear (profound impairment) or total loss of hearing in both the ears.
The statistics are staggering with 360 million people in the world suffering from disabled hearing loss. This constitutes a substantial 5.3% of the world’s population. The prevalence and incidence of hearing impairment in India are also substantially higher. The high burden of deafness globally and in India is largely preventable and avoidable.
In India, 63 million people (6.3%) suffer from significant auditory loss and 4 in every 1000 children suffer from severe to profound hearing loss. With over 100,000 babies that are born with hearing deficiencies every year, the estimated prevalence of adult-onset deafness in India was found to be 7.6% and childhood-onset deafness to be 2%. Hearing impairment is a serious but grossly neglected condition in India. The country also suffers a huge economic impact due to lost productivity, higher unemployment, and lower wages for the hearing impaired.
The major causes of hearing loss and ear diseases in India have been listed by a WHO survey. Ear wax (15.9%) was the most common cause of reversible hearing loss. Non-infectious causes such as ageing and Presbycusis are the next most common causes of auditory impairment in India (10.3%). Middle ear infections such as Chronic Suppurative Otitis Media (5.2%) and Serous Otitis Media (3%) are other leading causes of hearing loss. The other causes include dry perforation of the Tympanic Membrane (0.5%) and Bilateral Genetic and Congenital Deafness (0.2%). Approximately 50% of all cases of congenital hearing loss are attributable to environmental factors, such as Congenital Hyperbilirubinemia, Ototoxic Medication Exposure, Neonatal Hypoxia, Viral Infections, and Meningitis. The other 50% of cases are thought to be inherited, i.e., because of genetic causes.
Of these hereditary cases, approximately 30% are classified as syndromic. About 400 named syndromes are associated with hearing loss, the associated auditory features being quite variable – sensorineural or conductive, unilateral or bilateral, and progressive and stable. This small subset of hearing loss patients (15% of all patients with hearing loss) is the group most readily diagnosed by physicians due to recognizable features other than hearing loss. The other 70% of hereditary cases are classified as nonsyndromic. This group is the otherwise perfectly normal child with the exception of hearing loss. It is important to note that without hearing, a child cannot develop speech and language. Hence, the aim should be to recognize deaf child before the age of 1 year because from 1 to 3 years onward babies start hearing the speech.
The use of Cochlear Implants
A Cochlear Implant is probably one of the best inventions in the recent history of medical science for bilateral severe-profound deaf. It is the first device that can restore one of the five senses. Cochlear Implant surgery is done by a well-trained Otolaryngologist who works in close association with an Audiologist and speech therapists to restore normal hearing in deaf children. The sooner a child gets access to the hearing, the better are his/her chances of getting fully integrated into mainstream society. Early detection along with consequent treatment lead to better speech development in children, enhanced scholastic achievements in school, and limitless professional opportunities.
We at SRCC hospital provide the best range of services for hearing impaired children and expertise in Cochlear Implant surgery. Our motto at SRCC is ‘Don’t be deaf for the deaf’.
Diagnosis and treatment for Airway Disorders
We diagnose and manage congenital and acquired airway disorders including:
A multidisciplinary, coordinated approach to care, bridging many specialities, makes it possible to meet the complex needs of the children who come to our institute. We work in collaboration with a highly trained team of anaesthesiologists, paediatricians and intensivists who ensure the best treatment and care for babies and children with Airway Disorders.
Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy
The masses of immune cells that are found in the lymphoid tissue (lymph glands) are adenoids and tonsils. They are basically located in the mouth and at the back of the nasal passages. Oversized tonsils can cause a chronic sore throat, dental malocclusion, bad breath, obstruction of the upper airway causing a problem in swallowing and sleep apnea. On the other hand, oversized infected adenoids can cause ear infections or can also cause obstruct breathing. Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy are surgically performed to eliminate adenoids and tonsils.
Tonsillitis occurs due to the inflammation of tonsils and is caused either by bacteria or a virus. The condition is most commonly seen in children and rarely in adults. The symptoms in children suffering from Tonsillitis are swollen glands, fever and sore throat. Tonsillitis is very common and can occur at any age. However, it could also lead to Chronic Tonsillitis in many cases.
At NH SRCC Children’s Hospital, we use the latest technology such as the Coblator to perform these surgeries. Coblation Tonsillectomy is performed by using an ablation wand (pen-like device) and radio frequency radiation to remove tonsils either partially or completely. The procedure helps in removing the tonsils safely without damaging the surrounding tissues. The entire procedure takes about 30-45 minutes time and is done under general anaesthesia. Bleeding and postoperative pain is minimal with this technique thus ensuring a shorter hospital stay and early recovery.
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