The Effects of Changes in Head Angle on Auditory and Visual Input for Omnidirectional and Directional Microphone Hearing Aids Improving the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for individuals with hearing loss who are listening to speech in noise provides an obvious benefit. Although binaural hearing provides the greatest advantage over monaural hearing in noise, some individuals with symmetrical hearing loss choose to wear only one hearing aid. The present study tested ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 2003
The Effects of Changes in Head Angle on Auditory and Visual Input for Omnidirectional and Directional Microphone Hearing Aids
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Paula Henry, PhD
    Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center for Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences, Nashville, TN
    ARL-HRED, Building 520, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21005-5425
  • Todd Ricketts
    Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center for Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences, Nashville, TN
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: phenry@arl.army.mil
  • Paula Henry is now affiliated with the Army Research Laboratory, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Aberdeen, MD.
    Paula Henry is now affiliated with the Army Research Laboratory, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Aberdeen, MD.×
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Research and Technology / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 2003
The Effects of Changes in Head Angle on Auditory and Visual Input for Omnidirectional and Directional Microphone Hearing Aids
American Journal of Audiology, June 2003, Vol. 12, 41-51. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2003/009)
History: Received June 23, 2002 , Accepted March 7, 2003
 
American Journal of Audiology, June 2003, Vol. 12, 41-51. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2003/009)
History: Received June 23, 2002; Accepted March 7, 2003

Improving the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for individuals with hearing loss who are listening to speech in noise provides an obvious benefit. Although binaural hearing provides the greatest advantage over monaural hearing in noise, some individuals with symmetrical hearing loss choose to wear only one hearing aid. The present study tested the hypothesis that individuals with symmetrical hearing loss fit with one hearing aid would demonstrate improved speech recognition in background noise with increases in head turn. Fourteen individuals were fit monaurally with a Starkey Gemini in-the-ear (ITE) hearing aid with directional and omnidirectional microphone modes. Speech recognition performance in noise was tested using the audiovisual version of the Connected Speech Test (CST v.3). The test was administered in auditory-only conditions as well as with the addition of visual cues for each of three head angles: 0°, 20°, and 40°. Results indicated improvement in speech recognition performance with changes in head angle for the auditory-only presentation mode at the 20° and 40° head angles when compared to 0°. Improvement in speech recognition performance for the auditory + visual mode was noted for the 20° head angle when compared to 0°. Additionally, a decrement in speech recognition performance for the auditory + visual mode was noted for the 40° head angle when compared to 0°. These results support a speech recognition advantage for listeners fit with one ITE hearing aid listening in a close listener-to-speaker distance when they turn their head slightly in order to increase signal intensity.

Acknowledgments
The data reported in this investigation were collected while the first author was affiliated with Vanderbilt University. The authors would like to thank Wes Grantham and Dan Ashmead for helpful suggestions and comments on earlier versions of this manuscript. We would also like to thank Jessica Welch for assistance with participant recruitment and data collection. This study was funded in part by Starkey Laboratories. Portions of this study were presented at the American Auditory Society Meeting, Scottsdale, AZ, March 2001, and at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Annual Convention, New Orleans, LA, November 2001.
Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire American Journal of Audiology content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access