Audiometric Testing With Pulsed, Steady, and Warble Tones in Listeners With Tinnitus and Hearing Loss Purpose This study evaluated the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association's recommendation that audiometric testing for patients with tinnitus should use pulsed or warble tones. Using listeners with varied audiometric configurations and tinnitus statuses, we asked whether steady, pulsed, and warble tones yielded similar audiometric thresholds, and which tone type was preferred. ... Research Article
Research Article  |   September 18, 2017
Audiometric Testing With Pulsed, Steady, and Warble Tones in Listeners With Tinnitus and Hearing Loss
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jennifer J. Lentz
    Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington
  • Matthew A. Walker
    Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington
  • Ciara E. Short
    Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington
  • Kimberly G. Skinner
    Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington
  • Correspondence to Jennifer J. Lentz: jjlentz@indiana.edu
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Editor-in-Chief: Sumitrajit Dhar
    Editor-in-Chief: Sumitrajit Dhar×
  • Editor: Ann Eddins
    Editor: Ann Eddins×
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Research Articles
Research Article   |   September 18, 2017
Audiometric Testing With Pulsed, Steady, and Warble Tones in Listeners With Tinnitus and Hearing Loss
American Journal of Audiology, September 2017, Vol. 26, 328-337. doi:10.1044/2017_AJA-17-0009
History: Received January 31, 2017 , Revised May 8, 2017 , Accepted May 12, 2017
 
American Journal of Audiology, September 2017, Vol. 26, 328-337. doi:10.1044/2017_AJA-17-0009
History: Received January 31, 2017; Revised May 8, 2017; Accepted May 12, 2017

Purpose This study evaluated the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association's recommendation that audiometric testing for patients with tinnitus should use pulsed or warble tones. Using listeners with varied audiometric configurations and tinnitus statuses, we asked whether steady, pulsed, and warble tones yielded similar audiometric thresholds, and which tone type was preferred.

Method Audiometric thresholds (octave frequencies from 0.25–16 kHz) were measured using steady, pulsed, and warble tones in 61 listeners, who were divided into 4 groups on the basis of hearing and tinnitus status. Participants rated the appeal and difficulty of each tone type on a 1–5 scale and selected a preferred type.

Results For all groups, thresholds were lower for warble than for pulsed and steady tones, with the largest effects above 4 kHz. Appeal ratings did not differ across tone type, but the steady tone was rated as more difficult than the warble and pulsed tones. Participants generally preferred pulsed and warble tones.

Conclusions Pulsed tones provide advantages over steady and warble tones for patients regardless of hearing or tinnitus status. Although listeners preferred pulsed and warble tones to steady tones, pulsed tones are not susceptible to the effects of off-frequency listening, a consideration when testing listeners with sloping audiograms.

Acknowledgments
This work was supported by a National Institutes of Health Research Grant R21 DC 013171 awarded to Jennifer J. Lentz. The authors would like to thank Katy Reneker and Hannah Bates for assistance during data collection and Yuan (Kim) He for help with generating the figures.
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