Background: Brainstem auditory evoked potential (BAEP) is an important neuro-electro dignostic test for evaluation of auditory pathway from inner ear through auditory nerve to the cortex. BAEPs are used to evaluate the integrity of auditory pathways and to localize defective transmission in clinical practice. Age and gender may alter various components of BAEP waves and can be important factors in clinical interpretation of BAEP results. So the present study was conducted to investigate possible effects of age and gender differences in BAEP latencies, interpeak latencies and amplitudes in different age groups of both sexes. Materials & Methods: A total number of 100 healthy normal hearing subjects (50 males and 50 females) aged 15- 50 years were selected and were further subdivided into 4 equal groups of 25 each. The absolute peak latencies, interpeak latencies and amplitudes of BAEP waves in various age groups as well as both sexes were analyzed. The data was collected from both ears and was analysed statistically. Results: A significant increase in peak latency, interpeak latency and decrease in amplitude values of all waves was found with increase in age. Also a significant increase in all these parameters was observed in males as compared to females. Conclusion: All the changes in BAEPs waves in our study support the possible role of age and gender as contributory factors for normal variations which should be considered while interpreting the results of BAEP in clinical practice.
Key words: Brain stem auditory evoked potentials, age, gender.