Effects of tubing length and coupling method on hearing threshold and real-ear to coupler difference measures

Samantha Gustafson, Andrea Pittman, Robert Fanning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: This tutorial demonstrates the effects of tubing length and coupling type (i.e., foam tip or personal earmold) on hearing threshold and real-ear-to-coupler difference (RECD) measures. Method: Hearing thresholds from 0.25 kHz through 8 kHz are reported at various tubing lengths for 28 normal-hearing adults between the ages of 22 and 31 years. RECD values are reported for 14 of the adults. All measures were made with an insert earphone coupled to a standard foam tip and with an insert earphone coupled to each participant's personal earmold. Results: Threshold and RECD measures obtained with a personal earmold were significantly different from those obtained with a foam tip on repeated measures analyses of variance. One-sample t tests showed these differences to vary systematically with increasing tubing length, with the largest average differences (7-8 dB) occurring at 4 kHz. Conclusions: This systematic examination demonstrates the equal and opposite effects of tubing length on threshold and acoustic measures. Specifically, as tubing length increased, sound pressure level in the ear canal decreased, affecting both hearing thresholds and the real-ear portion of the RECDs. This demonstration shows that when the same coupling method is used to obtain the hearing thresholds and RECD, equal and accurate estimates of real-ear sound pressure level are obtained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)190-199
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Audiology
Volume22
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2013

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Hearing
Ear
Pressure
Ear Canal
Acoustics
Analysis of Variance

Keywords

  • Audiometry
  • Earmolds
  • Real-ear measures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Effects of tubing length and coupling method on hearing threshold and real-ear to coupler difference measures. / Gustafson, Samantha; Pittman, Andrea; Fanning, Robert.

In: American Journal of Audiology, Vol. 22, No. 1, 06.2013, p. 190-199.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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