Verifying Loudness Perception After Hearing Aid Fitting During the verification phase of a hearing aid fitting, clinicians often want to assess the extent to which loudness perceptions for amplified sounds are similar to those typical of normal hearers. This type of verification calls for a criterion for "normal" loudness perception of sounds presented in a sound field. ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 2001
Verifying Loudness Perception After Hearing Aid Fitting
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Robyn M. Cox
    The Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Memphis, TN, and the University of Memphis, Memphis, TN
    Memphis Speech & Hearing Center, 807 Jefferson Avenue, Memphis, TN 38105
  • Ginger A. Gray
    The University of Memphis, Memphis, TN
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Audiologic / Aural Rehabilitation / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 2001
Verifying Loudness Perception After Hearing Aid Fitting
American Journal of Audiology, December 2001, Vol. 10, 91-98. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2001/009)
History: Received January 25, 2001 , Accepted August 15, 2001
 
American Journal of Audiology, December 2001, Vol. 10, 91-98. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2001/009)
History: Received January 25, 2001; Accepted August 15, 2001

During the verification phase of a hearing aid fitting, clinicians often want to assess the extent to which loudness perceptions for amplified sounds are similar to those typical of normal hearers. This type of verification calls for a criterion for "normal" loudness perception of sounds presented in a sound field. This research sought to answer several questions about the parameters of a valid "normal" criterion for a verification procedure using the Contour test of loudness perception. Loudness data were obtained from 30 listeners with normal hearing. Results indicated that a loudness growth function obtained with earphone listening is not an appropriate normative reference for hearing aid fitting verification. Instead, the normative data should be based on sound field listening. Results also indicated that the same normative function could be used to assess both unilateral and bilateral fittings. Further, it is likely that the same normative function can be used for most frequency responses that are likely to be used in feasible fittings. Finally, it was found that a previously published normative function obtained using an automated test procedure was not faithfully replicated using a carefully executed fully manual test procedure. We concluded that, until a replicable normative function is established, practitioners will need to generate their own local norms to perform postfitting verification of loudness normalization.

Acknowledgments
This article is based on work supported by the Office of Research and Development, Rehabilitation R&D Service, Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
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