• Hearing loss is extremely common in Down syndrome
  • Poor hearing can have a major impact on development of language, behaviour and social functioning
  • It is essential that all people with Down syndrome have regular screening for hearing loss
  • Conductive hearing loss, due to glue ear is most frequently encountered in children but may persist into adulthood
  • Age related hearing loss is more common in those with Down syndrome , and occurs more frequently and at a younger age than in the general population
  • Hearing aids can be very effectively used by children and adults with Down syndrome
  • Grommets may play a part in management of glue ear in Down syndrome , but benefit may be short-lived

Last update March 2024

Dr Liz Marder

DSMIG Guidance

Best Practice Guidance For The Management Of Hearing Issues In People With Down Syndrome

DSMIG guidance

Last updated: June 2017

Presentations at DSMIG Meetings

Materials from meetings are available for members only who need to log in to access them. For details on how to become a member click here.

Additional Resources

Otitis media with effusion in under 12s
NICE guideline Published: 30 August 2023

Early hearing loss and language abilities in children with Down syndrome.Laws G, Hall A. Int J Lang Commun Disord. 2014 Mar 21. doi: 10.1111/1460-6984.12077

Book Chapter – Hearing Issues

Emma McNeill, Patrick Sheehan and Liz Marder

ds-current-perspectives-book-coverDown Syndrome – Current Perspectives

Edited by Richard Newton , Shiela Puri and Liz Marder