Hearing loss in children

Children up to the age of 18 presenting with suspected hearing loss.

Assessment

Signs and Symptoms

  • Hearing loss for more than 4 weeks unless there is sudden unexplained loss or significant impact on child development

Examination

  • Otoscopy – check for wax/blockage/foreign bodies
    • syringe if suitable/safe to do or arrange appropriate removal

Red flags

Patient with any of the following in addition to hearing loss need to be referred to ENT

  • Persistent nasal problems
  • Sore throats
  • Recurrent tonsillitis (unless the hearing loss is experienced separate to tonsillitis episodes) – see guideline

Management

Hearing loss up to 4 weeks may follow upper respiratory tract infections or acute suppurative otitis media. In the absence of red flags watchful waiting is appropriate in these cases.

Referral

Referral Criteria

Refer to Paediatric Audiology

Patients with:

  • Hearing loss for more than 4 weeks
  • Hearing loss with significant impact on child development
  • No gross abnormality of tympanic membranes
  • The majority of these patients will have glue ear and are appropriate for the paediatric audiology pathway
Refer to ENT

Patients with:

  • Abnormal tympanic membranes
  • Nose or throat issues in addition to hearing loss
  • Sudden unexplained hearing loss (if within 48 hours discuss with ENT SHO on call)
Refer to Speech & Language
  • Speech delay and no concerns with hearing

Referral Instructions

Paediatric Audiology referrals

Are made via e-Referral Service:

  • Speciality: Children's & Adolescent Services
  • Clinic Type: Audiology
  • Service: DRSS- South Devon & Torbay – Children & Adolescent Services-NEW Devon CCG-99
ENT referrals

Are made via e-Referral Service:

  • Speciality: Children's & Adolescent Services
  • Clinic Type: ENT
  • Service: DRSS- South Devon & Torbay – Children & Adolescent Services-NEW Devon CCG-99
Refer to SLT

To see how to refer click here

Referral Forms

Torbay Paediatric audiology referral form

Torbay and South Devon seeking advice form

Supporting Information

Patient Information

Hearing assessment for your childs information leaflet - - Torbay and South Devon

Evidence

NICE surgical management of otitis media with effusion in children CG60

Pathway Group

This guideline has been signed off by South Devon and Torbay CCG

Publication date: January 2018

 

Home > Referral > SDevon & Torbay > ENT & Audiology > Hearing loss in children

 

  • First line
  • Second line
  • Specialist
  • Hospital