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The Influence of Education Level on Tinnitus and Quality of Life in Korean Adults

대한이비인후과학회지-두경부외과학 2019년 62권 9호 p.499 ~ 506
정다정 ( Jung Da-Jung ) - 경북대학교 의과대학 이비인후-두경부외과학교실

유명훈 ( Yoo Myung-Hoon ) - 경북대학교 의과대학 이비인후-두경부외과학교실
정유진 ( Jung Yu-JIn ) - 경북대학교 의과대학 이비인후-두경부외과학교실
 ( Lee Hyun-Ju ) - 경북대학교 의과대학 이비인후-두경부외과학교실
이규엽 ( Lee Kyu-Yup ) - 경북대학교 의과대학 이비인후-두경부외과학교실


Background and Objectives: We aimed to evaluate the effect of the level of education on the prevalence of tinnitus and quality of life (QoL) in the Korean population.

Subjects and Method: Our study included 3155 participants from a representative sample. Tinnitus was measured using questionnaires that evaluated perception of ringing, buzzing, roaring, or hissing sounds. Participants were asked to indicate “Yes” or “No” to these questions. Participants who felt that the sensation was “A little annoying” or “Very annoying” were considered to have moderate or severe tinnitus, respectively. Hearing thresholds were measured using an automatic audiometer. QoL was evaluated using the EuroQoL (EQ) scale.

Results: The number of participants in the low, middle, and high education groups were 1521, 967, and 667, respectively. Participants with any degree of tinnitus or moderate to severe tinnitus increased as the level of education decreased. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that the low education group had significantly higher odds ratios compared to the middle or high education groups for moderate to severe tinnitus. Abnormal EQ 5-dimensions (EQ-5D) were higher in participants with tinnitus and a low level of education. For participants, univariate and multivariate analyses showed EQ-5D index and EQ-visual analog scale in the low education group were lower than that in the other groups.

Conclusion: Our study showed that low education level was associated with moderate to severe tinnitus in the Korean adult population. Participants with tinnitus and a low level of education had poorer QoL than those with tinnitus and a high level of education.


Education; Hearing loss; Quality of life; Tinnitus
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