About this Research Topic
Hearing loss is one of the most common chronic disabilities in the aging population. Its prevalence is estimated worldwide as a third of the population aged over 65. The two main features of Age-Related Hearing Loss (ARHL) are peripheral ARHL and age-related Central Auditory Processing Disorders (CAPD). Peripheral ARHL is mostly related to a progressive decline of cochlear dysfunction, assessed by pure tone audiometry, while age-related CAPD refers to central auditory pathways disorders (particularly the ones that are involved in speech perception processing) that imply difficulties in understanding speech against background noise or competitive speech that do not contribute to peripheral ARHL. ARHL has been independently associated with poorer cognitive functioning, accelerated cognitive decline, incident dementia, falls, slower gait and cardiovascular disease, and physical frailty. It is now well known that both central and peripheral hearing loss can be a catalyzing factor for degenerative aging processes. Their central role as a determinant for age-related degenerative processes highlights the need to explore the underlying mechanisms and define preventive and rehabilitative interventions.
The purpose of this Research Topic is to increase the knowledge of the associations among ARHL, CAPD, and age-related functional deficits. This aim can only be achieved by exploring both the causal mechanisms behind the associations and the possible therapies and/or rehabilitation interventions for older people with these contextual disabilities. For this purpose, we ask our contributors to address, through their manuscripts, studies covering a broad range of investigation, from the biology of ARHL to the epidemiological evidence of associations with chronic diseases in clinical and population-based settings.
Keywords: Age-Related Hearing Loss, Central Auditory Processing Disorders, Frailty, Cognitive Impairment, Chronic Diseases, Aging, Sensory Impairment, Dual Sensory Impairment, Falls, Dementia, Speech Perception
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.