Indexed on: 06 May '04Published on: 06 May '04Published in: International Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
Ethnicity has been readily accepted as a variable affecting the incidence of otitis media, with certain indigenous groups having an increased risk of middle ear dysfunction. Tympanometry provides objective information on middle ear status, and findings obtained from this procedure have often served as a criterion for medical referral.To extend previous research and to facilitate use of normative tympanometry measures obtained from children with native Hawaiian ancestry.Data were collected from 718 ears of 359 children in academic levels ranging from preschool to third grade. Subjects were matched across groups (182 native Hawaiian; 177 non-native Hawaiian) for academic level and gender. Variables included physical ear-canal volume (Vec), tympanometric peak compliance (peak Y, also known as static admittance), tympanometric width (TW), and tympanometric peak pressure (TPP).Significantly higher TW (F1,714=8.82, P=0.008) and TPP (F1,714=9.98, P=0.002) values occurred in ears of native Hawaiian children. Statistical interaction between gender and age was not significant.Differences in tympanometric findings between groups suggest differences in middle ear function, and these findings continue to underscore the importance of including tympanometry within a hearing screening protocol for early identification of possible hearing impairment.