Maternal hypertension and preeclampsia have been related to sensorineural hearing loss in newborns. To investigate potential connections, we compared newborn hearing screening (NHS) results from newborns of mothers with chronic hypertension, preeclampsia, and eclampsia with results from newborns of healthy controls. The present study is unique with regard to its large sample size and the analysis of the possible effects of three different hypertensive disorders on newborn hearing.
We retrospectively searched the database of our hospital for pregnant women diagnosed with chronic hypertension, preeclampsia, and eclampsia according to the International Classification of Diseases Tenth Revision (ICD-10) diagnostic codes. The search covered the period from January 2010 to March 2020. NHS results were compared with those of newborns of healthy controls.
The auditory brainstem response (ABR) test results and categorical variables of infants of 146 women with preeclampsia, 71 women with chronic hypertension, and 10 women with eclampsia were compared with those of infants of 227 healthy women. Only the “bilateral pass” results were statistically significantly lower in the preeclampsia group in comparison to the control group (p = 0.036), but this was a temporary effect. Between the two groups, there was no significant difference in the second ABR (ABR refer) test.
There was a statistically significant difference between the preeclampsia and control groups only in the first ABR test. But, the ABR refer test results of these groups did not differ significantly. Therefore, we conclude that these temporary effects may be related to newborns being born prematurely and being small for their gestational age.

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