Poverty and InequalitySexual and Reproductive HealthFamily, Maternal & Child HealthMethodology

Maternal thyroid autoantibodies during the third trimester and hearing deficits in children: An epidemiologic assessment

TitleMaternal thyroid autoantibodies during the third trimester and hearing deficits in children: An epidemiologic assessment
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsWasserman, EE, Nelson, K, Rose, NR, Eaton, W, Pillion, JP, Seaberg, E, Talor, MV, Burek, L, Duggan, A, Yolken, RH
JournalAmerican Journal of Epidemiology
ISBN Number00029262 (ISSN)
KeywordsAbnormalities, abnormality, antibody, antibody detection, article, audiology, Autoantibodies, autoantibody, Autoimmunity, Baltimore, Child, Child development, child health, childhood disease, Cognition, enzyme linked immunosorbent assay, Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay, Epidemiologic Studies, epidemiological data, Epidemiology, Female, female infertility, Hearing, hearing disorder, Hearing Loss, Sensorineural, human, Humans, hypothyroidism, Immunoassay, Iodide Peroxidase, major clinical study, Male, MARYLAND, Maternal Welfare, nerve cell differentiation, North America, perception deafness, perinatal care, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Complications, Pregnancy Outcome, Pregnancy Trimester, Third, Prevalence, race difference, sensory system disorder, serum, spontaneous abortion, third trimester pregnancy, thyroid antibody, Thyroid Gland, thyroid peroxidase, thyroid peroxidase antibody, United States

Elevated maternal thyroid autoantibodies during pregnancy are linked to infertility, miscarriage, and neurodevelopmental deficits such as in cognitive function. It has not been established whether autoantibodies to thyroid peroxidase are associated with sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL). The authors tested stored third-trimester maternal serum specimens of 1,736 children for thyroid peroxidase autoantibodies (TPOaAb) by using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay technique. The children participated at the Baltimore, Maryland, site of the Collaborative Perinatal Project, which enrolled pregnant women in 1959-1965. An audiology examination was administered to the children at 8 years of age and was used to identify cases of SNHL. Compared with 4.3% of the other children, 22.7% of the children whose mothers had elevated TPOaAb (≥62.5 IU/ml) had SNHL. The difference was significant after controlling for maternal race, age, and hypothyroidism (exact prevalence odds ratio = 7.5, 95% confidence interval: 2.4, 23.3). When a lower cutoff of TPOaAb ≥31.25 IU/ml was used, there continued to be an association with SNHL (exact prevalence odds ratio = 5.7, 95% confidence interval: 2.1, 15.6). The direction and magnitude of the association were similar when an alternative case definition of SNHL was used. These data suggest that antenatal exposure to maternal TPOaAb during the third trimester of pregnancy is associated with impaired auditory development. © The Author 2007. Published by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. All rights reserved.