Edward F. Bell, MD
Peer Review Status: Internally Peer Reviewed*

The following are indications for hearing screening prior to discharge:

  • Family history of childhood hearing loss
  • Congenital defects of the ear, nose, or throat
  • Birth weight <1500 grams
  • Meningitis
  • Congenital infection
  • Hyperbilirubinemia requiring an exchange transfusion
  • Pulmonary hypertension ( persistent fetal circulation)
  • Maternal rubella infection
  • Birth asphyxia (5-minute Apgar score below 7)
  • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
  • Other anomalies or relevant diagnoses that the physician believes warrants a hearing screen. A consult can be requested at the physician 's discretion.

Infants who satisfy any of these criteria (A-J) will normally be identified by an audiologist from the Department of Otolaryngology. The audiologist will place an E-1 consultation form on the baby's chart with the indicators for hearing test marked. The baby's resident physician should verify that the indication is met and sign the form as requesting physician.

Administration of aminoglycoside antibiotics is not an indication unless one of the above criteria is also met or if serum levels were in the toxic range. IV. Please schedule the hearing screening test at least one week prior to discharge.

*Note: It is anticipated that universal hearing screening may be implemented in the Special Care Nurseries within the lifetime of this edition.