Contribution of High-Frequency Information to the Acceptance of Background Noise in Listeners With Normal and Impaired Hearing Purpose To determine whether information beyond 2.0 kHz affected the acceptance of background noise in listeners with normal and/or impaired hearing. Method Speech stimuli (Arizona Travelogue) and multitalker babble were low-pass filtered at cutoff frequencies of 2.0, 4.0, and 6.0 kHz and presented using an adaptive paradigm to ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 2007
Contribution of High-Frequency Information to the Acceptance of Background Noise in Listeners With Normal and Impaired Hearing
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Patrick N. Plyler
    University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Steven G. Madix
    Louisiana Tech University, Ruston
  • James W. Thelin
    University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Kristie W. Johnston
    University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Contact author: Patrick N. Plyler, Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology, University of Tennessee, 578 South Stadium Hall, Knoxville, TN 37996-0740. E-mail: pplyler@utk.edu.
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Research and Technology / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 2007
Contribution of High-Frequency Information to the Acceptance of Background Noise in Listeners With Normal and Impaired Hearing
American Journal of Audiology, December 2007, Vol. 16, 149-156. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2007/019)
History: Received November 7, 2006 , Revised February 21, 2007 , Accepted August 17, 2007
 
American Journal of Audiology, December 2007, Vol. 16, 149-156. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2007/019)
History: Received November 7, 2006; Revised February 21, 2007; Accepted August 17, 2007

Purpose To determine whether information beyond 2.0 kHz affected the acceptance of background noise in listeners with normal and/or impaired hearing.

Method Speech stimuli (Arizona Travelogue) and multitalker babble were low-pass filtered at cutoff frequencies of 2.0, 4.0, and 6.0 kHz and presented using an adaptive paradigm to determine the most comfortable level (MCL) and acceptable noise level (ANL) for 4 experimental conditions (unfiltered, 2.0, 4.0, and 6.0 kHz) for each listener.

Results MCL for listening to speech in quiet was significantly increased when the speech stimuli were low-pass filtered at 2.0 kHz relative to the unfiltered and 6.0-kHz conditions. Acceptance of background noise was significantly poorer when the speech and noise stimuli were low-pass filtered at 2.0 kHz relative to the 6.0-kHz condition. Listeners with impaired hearing sensitivity had significantly greater MCL values than listeners with normal hearing, but ANL values were not significantly affected by the hearing sensitivity of the listener.

Conclusions Information beyond 2.0 kHz significantly affected MCL and ANL values in both listeners with normal hearing and impaired hearing; however, effects for both the MCL and ANL measurements were small and may not be significant clinically.

Acknowledgment
The normal hearing data in this article were part of a poster presentation at the American Academy of Audiology National Convention, Washington, DC, April 2005.
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