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Occupational hearing loss (OHL) worker surveillance data: prevalence of hearing loss in the United States by industry (dataset).

Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Surveillance Dataset SD-1001-2014-0, 2014 May; :dataset
Background: Twenty-two million workers are exposed to hazardous noise in the United States. The purpose of this study is to estimate the prevalence of hearing loss among U.S. industries. Methods: We examined 2000-2008 audiograms for male and female workers ages 18-65, who had higher occupational noise exposures than the general population. Prevalence and adjusted prevalence ratios (PRs) for hearing loss were estimated and compared across industries. Results: In our sample, 18% of workers had hearing loss. When compared with the Couriers and Messengers industry sub-sector, workers employed in Mining (PR = 1.65, CI = 1.57-1.73), Wood Product Manufacturing (PR = 1.65, CL = 1.61- 1.70), Construction of Buildings (PR = 1.59, CI = 1.51-1.68), and Real Estate and Rental and Leasing (PR = 1.61, CL = 1.51-1.71) had higher risks for hearing loss. Conclusions: Workers in the Mining, Manufacturing, and Construction industries need better engineering controls for noise and stronger hearing conservation strategies. More hearing loss research is also needed within traditional ''low-risk'' industries like Real Estate. For further information, please contact Liz Masterson at or (513) 841-4291.
Hearing; Hearing-loss; Humans; Men; Women; Audiometers; Workers; Age-groups; Noise-exposure; Exposure-levels; Hazards; Noise; Noise-exposure; Risk-factors; Surveillance-programs; Author Keywords: occupational hearing loss; hearing impairment; hazardous noise; noise-induced hearing loss; occupational noise exposure standard
Publication Date
Document Type
Surveillance Dataset
Email Address
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
SD-1001-2014-0; M082014
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Source Name
Occupational hearing loss (OHL) worker surveillance data: prevalence of hearing loss in the United States by industry."
Page last reviewed: September 3, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division