WA-4: Current Perspectives on the Association of Hearing Loss and Falls


Falls, the leading cause of accidental death, are the most common and costly hearing-related safety event in older adults, with a fall occurring in the U.S. every second.  Hearing loss (HL) has been shown to have an association with falling.  The purpose of this presentation is 3 fold: 1) to provide the participant with an overview and background of the current state of knowledge surrounding the association between HL and falls.  To achieve this aim, we will review prior published research that has examined the association between hearing loss and falls.  Second (2) we will describe a proposed mechanistic model that highlights potential explanatory factors may explain the association between HL and falls and the potential role of amplification.  Finally, we will 3) present recent research findings from a multi-site NIDCD funded research study in our lab that examines these factors in audiology patients.

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe association between hearing loss and falls
  • Explain existing gaps in knowledge regarding mechanisms underlying association
  • Describe results of recent research aimed at understanding if and how hearing aid impacts the association and potential mediating factors