Review  |   December 2012
An Evidence-Based Systematic Review of Amplitude Compression in Hearing Aids for School-Age Children With Hearing Loss
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Rebecca A. Venediktov
    American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Rockville, MD
  • Jaumeiko J. Coleman
    American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Rockville, MD
  • Hillary M. Leech
    American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Rockville, MD
  • Correspondence to Ryan W. McCreery: Ryan.McCreery@boystown.org
  • Hillary M. Leech is now at Carroll County Public Schools, Maryland.
    Hillary M. Leech is now at Carroll County Public Schools, Maryland.×
  • Editor and Associate Editor: Larry Humes
    Editor and Associate Editor: Larry Humes×
Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Review
Review   |   December 2012
An Evidence-Based Systematic Review of Amplitude Compression in Hearing Aids for School-Age Children With Hearing Loss
American Journal of Audiology December 2012, Vol.21, 269-294. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2012/12-0013)
History: Accepted 08 Jul 2012 , Received 13 Mar 2012 , Revised 02 Jul 2012
American Journal of Audiology December 2012, Vol.21, 269-294. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2012/12-0013)
History: Accepted 08 Jul 2012 , Received 13 Mar 2012 , Revised 02 Jul 2012

Purpose: Two clinical questions were developed: one addressing the comparison of linear amplification with compression limiting to linear amplification with peak clipping, and the second comparing wide dynamic range compression with linear amplification for outcomes of audibility, speech recognition, speech and language, and self- or parent report in children with hearing loss.

Method: Twenty-six databases were systematically searched for studies addressing a clinical question and meeting all inclusion criteria. Studies were evaluated for methodological quality, and effect sizes were reported or calculated when possible.

Results: The literature search resulted in the inclusion of 8 studies. All 8 studies included comparisons of wide dynamic range compression to linear amplification, and 2 of the 8 studies provided comparisons of compression limiting versus peak clipping.

Conclusions: Moderate evidence from the included studies demonstrated that audibility was improved and speech recognition was either maintained or improved with wide dynamic range compression as compared with linear amplification. No significant differences were observed between compression limiting and peak clipping on outcomes (i.e., speech recognition and self-/parent report) reported across the 2 studies. Preference ratings appear to be influenced by participant characteristics and environmental factors. Further research is needed before conclusions can confidently be drawn.

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