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Home > Arhiva > 2018 > Numar: 4 > Self-Rated Hearing and Self-Rated Memory II: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of SHARE Data from 18 European Nations

 Self-Rated Hearing and Self-Rated Memory II: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of SHARE Data from 18 European Nations

  • Corina Ilinca (University of Bucharest, Statistical Office, Bucharest, Romania, E-mail:
  • Stephen J. Cutler (Professor of Sociology, Emeritus and Emeritus Bishop Robert F. Joyce Distinguished University Professor of Gerontology, University of Vermont, 31 South Prospect Street, Burlington, VT 05405 USA, 18027582025,

Purpose: Recent work indicates a connection between hearing loss and dementia. Our prior research has added to this by showing strong relationships between self-reported hearing ability and self-reports of memory functioning. Although analytically rigorous, this research was based on data from only the United States. Indeed, virtually all research in this area is country-specific. Methods: Here, we replicate the basic US, cross-sectional research using data on Rs ages 50+ from 18 European nations included in the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), with country Ns ranging from 6,287 to 1,560. We use correlation analysis to examine bivariate relationships and regression analysis (with controls for age, marital status, education, gender, and health) to examine multivariate relationships. Results: In every European country included in SHARE, the bivariate relationship between self-reported hearing and memory is positive and significant, averaging 0.343. Likewise, the multivariate relationships with controls are also positive and significant (the average beta is 0.228). Implications: We conclude by noting (1) that the positive relationship between self-reported hearing and memory extends well beyond the US, (2) that the role subjective hearing may play in memory assessments and dementia merits much more detailed study, and (3) that practitioners need to pay attention to their patients’ hearing for processes requiring remembering (e.g., informed consent) to be effective. Replication of these relationships in Latin American nations and in other non-Western settings would also be valuable.

Keywords: perceptions of hearing, perceptions of memory, cross-national analysis, SHARE data, ordinary least squares regression