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Assessment of the Brainstem- Mediated Stapedius Muscle Reflex in Andean Children Living at High Altitudes
Harvard Med Sch, Biol Labs, Dept Neurol, 16 Divin Ave, Cambridge, MA 02138 USA.;Massachusetts Gen Hosp, Dept Neurophysiol, Boston, MA 02114 USA..
Harvard Univ Hlth Serv, Audiol Clin, Dept Otolaryngol, Cambridge, MA USA..
Univ San Francisco Quito, Galapagos Inst Arts & Sci GAIAS, Colegio Ciencias Salud, Escuela Salud Publ, Quito, Ecuador..
Harvard Biol Labs, Cambridge, MA USA..
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2017 (English)In: High Altitude Medicine & Biology, ISSN 1527-0297, E-ISSN 1557-8682, Vol. 18, no 1, p. 37-45Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study examined the physiological thresholds, amplitude growth, and contraction duration of the acoustic stapedius reflex (ASR) in Andean children aged 2-17 years living at altitudes of 2850m (Altitude I Group) and 3973m (Altitude II Group) as part of a general medical assessment of the health status of the children. The brainstem-mediated ASR reveals the integrity of the neuronal components of the auditory reflex arc, including the cochlea receptors, eight cranial nerves, and brainstem neural projections to the cochlear nuclei, bilateral superior olivary nuclei, facial nerve nuclei, and facial nerve and its stapedius branch. Uncrossed (ipsilateral) and crossed (contralateral) ASR thresholds (ASRT), ASR amplitude growth (ASRG) function, and ASR muscle contraction duration (decay/ fatigue) (ASRD) were measured noninvasively with 500, 1000 Hz and broadband (bandwidth = 125-4000 Hz) noise stimulus activators using a middle ear immittance system. Oxygen saturation (SaO(2)) level and heart rate were measured in a subsample of the study group. Statistical analyses revealed that the Altitude I and Altitude II groups had ASRT, ASRG function, and ASRD rates comparable to children at sea level and that the two groups were not significantly different for any of the ASR measures. No significant association was found between SaO(2) or heart rate and ASRT, growth, and muscle fatigue rate. In conclusion, the assessment of the ASR in children in the high-altitude groups revealed normal function. Furthermore, the results indicate no adverse oto-physiological effects of altitude on the brainstem-mediated ASR at elevations between 2850 and 4000m and suggest normal middle ear and auditory brainstem function.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC , 2017. Vol. 18, no 1, p. 37-45
Keywords [en]
altitude, Andean, auditory, brainstem, children, hearing, hypoxia, stapedius reflex
National Category
Otorhinolaryngology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-320300DOI: 10.1089/ham.2016.0082ISI: 000397571000005PubMedID: 27860516OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-320300DiVA, id: diva2:1089140
Available from: 2017-04-18 Created: 2017-04-18 Last updated: 2017-04-18Bibliographically approved

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Laurell, Göran

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Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery
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