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Prevalence of Noise Induced Hearing Loss Among Vehicle Drivers at Bandar Abbas Freight Terminal, South of Iran

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Abstract: Background: Traffic noise is one of the major sources of environmental pollution that can cause permanent or temporary loss of hearing in drivers. The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of hearing loss among professional long-distance drivers in Bandar Abbas freight terminal. Methods: One thousand long distance occupational drivers in Bandar Abbas freight terminal not certified by underlying medical conditions were selected for this study. The demographic background, experience, type and kind of vehicles were recorded in a check list. Audiometry test was done at 500, 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, 6000, and 8000 Hz using Welton 1300 audiometer equipped with AD-19 supra-aural earphones. Statistical analysis was done using analysis of variance (ANOVA). Results: The age, experience, vehicle kind and weight of drivers were 34.02 } 13.19, 8.21 } 7.84, and 8.73 } 6.12 years and 68.30 } 15.61 kg. Approximately 52 of drivers studied had a degree of hearing loss. The most common type of hearing loss was sensorineural with mild loss of 69 and 70.9 for the left and right ears, respectively. Conclusion: Periodic medical examination with emphasis on the audiometry can be a way of diagnosing hearing loss in the drivers In addition to providing training courses for the drivers on hearing protection, the use of ear muffs equipment in the truck noise can also be considered as a solution.

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