Original Research

A comparison between video otoscopy and standard tympanometry findings in adults living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in South Africa

Ben Sebothoma, Katijah Khoza-Shangase
South African Journal of Communication Disorders | Vol 65, No 1 | a591 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajcd.v65i1.591 | © 2018 Ben Sebothoma | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 January 2018 | Published: 16 July 2018

About the author(s)

Ben Sebothoma, Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, School of Human and Community Development, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
Katijah Khoza-Shangase, Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, School of Human and Community Development, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Literature suggests that there is a correlation between video otoscopy and standard tympanometry findings. However, there is limited evidence on whether these two measures are comparable in the identification of middle ear pathologies in adults living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

 

Objective: This study aimed to determine the correlation between video otoscopy and standard tympanometry with 226 Hz probe tone in the identification of middle ear pathologies in adults living with HIV in Limpopo, South Africa.

 

Method: A prospective, non-experimental, comparative design was employed on HIV-positive adults aged 18 years and older. All participants underwent basic audiological assessment including case history interviews, video otoscopy, tympanometry with a 226 Hz probe tone and pure tone audiometry. Two ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialists independently analysed video otoscopic images and provided their reports to the researcher, and these were compared to the tympanometry results. The IBM SPSS v.24 was used for data analysis, including the use of Cohen’s kappa to determine the agreement between the two procedures. Pearson’s correlation coefficient was used to determine the strength of the correlation between tympanometry and video otoscopy.

 

Results: A total of 87 adults (N = 161 ears) took part in the study. Middle ear pathology was observed in 8% (n = 13) of the sample when tympanometry was used, and this increased to 10.6% (n = 17) when video otoscopy was utilised. Kappa statistics found a good agreement (k = 0.7) between the diagnoses made by two ENTs. However, there was poor agreement (k = 0.2) between the diagnoses by video otoscopy and tympanometry. Pearson’s correlation coefficient indicated weak correlation between video otoscopy and tympanometry (r = 0.195).

 

Conclusion: Findings from this study suggest that video otoscopy may be more accurate in the identification of middle ear pathologies in adults living with HIV when compared to tympanometry. These findings have training implications in the use of video otoscopy to ensure accuracy and reliability. Clinical implications of current findings include the use of both video otoscopy and tympanometry in a complementary manner for more sensitive identification of middle ear pathologies in this population. Lastly, tele-audiologic implications of the use of video otoscopy to increase access in resource-constrained contexts are raised.


Keywords

video-otoscopy; tympanometry; adults; HIV

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