Int Arch Otorhinolaryngol 2014; 18 - a2143
DOI: 10.1055/s-0034-1388755

Correlation between Hearing and Memory in Healthy Elderly

Adriane Ribeiro Teixeira 1, Amanda Bressanelli 1, Andréa Kruger Gonçalves 1, Lílian Benin 1, Maira Rozenfeld Olchik 1, Rayane Brum de Fraga 1
  • 1Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Su

Introduction: National and international studies have shown the relationship between hearing loss and cognitive decline in the elderly.

Objective: To correlate the hearing thresholds with performance on a memory test.

Methods: Cross-sectional, observational, and comparative study. Elderly participants of an extension project were evaluated by otoscopy, pure tone audiometry, and Rey Auditory-Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT), which assess immediate memory, retention of short and long term.

Results: We analyzed 20 elderly, 18 (90%) females, and 2 (10%) male. Mean age was 72.1 ± 6.6 years and mean years of education was 12 ± 4.3 years. The average hearing thresholds in the better ear was 25 ± 12.0 dB HL. Eleven elderly (55%) had normal hearing, 7 (35%) mild hearing loss, and 2 (10%) hearing loss of moderate degree. Regarding the performance in the RAVLT, the mean for learning Rey (A1-A5) were 34.5 ± 4.5 words, for immediate recall, it were 6.3 ± 2.4 words, and the recent memory, it were 5.7 ± 2.3 words. There was a negative correlation to performance in immediate memory and hearing thresholds (r = −0.549, p = 0.012).

Conclusion: Correlation between hearing thresholds and performance in tests of immediate memory.