Questionnaire to assess the significance of history taking in assessment of otitis media with effusion in children


  • Reem Mohamed AlQaed Department of Ear Nose Throat, King Hamad University Hospital, Alsayah, Bahrain
  • Ayman Salman King Hamad University Hospital, Alsayah, Barain
  • Salman Mohamed Aljawder Department of Ear Nose Throat, King Hamad University Hospital, Alsayah, Bahrain
  • Andrew Nabil Riskalla Department of Ear Nose Throat, King Hamad University Hospital, Alsayah, Bahrain



Otitis media, Otitis media with effusion, Pediatric, School age, Preschool age


Background: There is a high prevalence of Otitis media with effusion (OME) with diagnoses of least 50% of children under the age of one, and 60% of children under the age of two. Complications have a significant impact on a child’s quality of life including hearing impairment, language acquisition delay, declining school performance, and behavioral problems. The objective of the study is to develop and test the reliability of a simple questionnaire based on common complaints given by caregivers of children with OME.

Methods: 100 patients were included from the ENT Clinic at King Hamad University Hospital and categorized into preschool age (1-4 years) and School age (5-15 years). A bilingual binary questionnaire was developed (Cronbach’s Alpha: 0.89).  

Results: There were 22 preschool age patients, and 78 school age patients. Six complaints were significant where the child does not respond to name calling (p=0.031), needs to raise the TV volume (p=0.000), occasionally talks loudly (p=0.003), uses verbal communication for their needs (p=0.000), has episodes of clumsiness and dizziness (p=0.000), and doesn’t pronounce words correctly according to their age (p=0.008).

Conclusions: Questionnaires based on complaints can aid the diagnosis of OME as caregiver’s assessment is often limited.


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