Examination of Prosody and Timbre Perception in Adults With Cochlear Implants Comparing Different Fine Structure Coding Strategies Purpose This study aimed to investigate whether adults with cochlear implants benefit from a change of fine structure (FS) coding strategies regarding the discrimination of prosodic speech cues, timbre cues, and the identification of natural instruments. The FS processing (FSP) coding strategy was compared to 2 settings of the FS4 ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 08, 2018
Examination of Prosody and Timbre Perception in Adults With Cochlear Implants Comparing Different Fine Structure Coding Strategies
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Verena Müller
    Clinic of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery and Cochlear Implant Centre, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Heinz Klünter
    Clinic of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery and Cochlear Implant Centre, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Dirk Fürstenberg
    Clinic of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery and Cochlear Implant Centre, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Hartmut Meister
    Jean Uhrmacher Institute for Clinical ENT-Research, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Martin Walger
    Clinic of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery and Cochlear Implant Centre, University of Cologne, Germany
    Jean Uhrmacher Institute for Clinical ENT-Research, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Ruth Lang-Roth
    Clinic of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery and Cochlear Implant Centre, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Disclosure: MED-EL (Innsbruck, Austria) provided technical support and financial reimbursements for participants' travel expenses.
    Disclosure: MED-EL (Innsbruck, Austria) provided technical support and financial reimbursements for participants' travel expenses. ×
  • Correspondence to Verena Müller: verena.mueller@uk-koeln.de
  • Editor-in-Chief: Sumitrajit Dhar
    Editor-in-Chief: Sumitrajit Dhar×
  • Editor: Monita Chatterjee
    Editor: Monita Chatterjee×
Article Information
Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 08, 2018
Examination of Prosody and Timbre Perception in Adults With Cochlear Implants Comparing Different Fine Structure Coding Strategies
American Journal of Audiology, June 2018, Vol. 27, 197-207. doi:10.1044/2017_AJA-17-0046
History: Received May 2, 2017 , Revised August 15, 2017 , Accepted December 10, 2017
 
American Journal of Audiology, June 2018, Vol. 27, 197-207. doi:10.1044/2017_AJA-17-0046
History: Received May 2, 2017; Revised August 15, 2017; Accepted December 10, 2017

Purpose This study aimed to investigate whether adults with cochlear implants benefit from a change of fine structure (FS) coding strategies regarding the discrimination of prosodic speech cues, timbre cues, and the identification of natural instruments. The FS processing (FSP) coding strategy was compared to 2 settings of the FS4 strategy.

Method A longitudinal crossover, double-blinded study was conducted. This study consisted of 2 parts, with 14 participants in the first part and 12 participants in the second part. Each part lasted 3 months, in which participants were alternately fitted with either the established FSP strategy or 1 of the 2 newly developed FS4 settings. Participants had to complete an intonation identification test; a timbre discrimination test in which 1 of 2 isolated cues changed, either the spectral centroid or the spectral irregularity; and an instrument identification test.

Results A significant effect was seen in the discrimination of spectral irregularity with 1 of the 2 FS4 settings. The improvement was seen in the FS4 setting in which the upper envelope channels had a low stimulation rate. This improvement was not seen with the FS4 setting that had a higher stimulation rate on the envelope channels.

Conclusions In general, the FSP strategy and the 2 settings of the FS4 strategy provided similar levels in the perception of prosody and timbre cues, as well as in the identification of instruments.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by MED-EL Deutschland GmbH (Innsbruck, Austria). MED-EL provided technical support and financial reimbursements for participants' travel expenses in the second part of the study. We would like to thank our participants for their time and dedication. In addition, we would like to thank Markus Landwehr for processing the stimuli of the timbre experiment, Edda Amann (MED-EL) for her help with statistical calculations, and Laura Kerr (MED-EL) for language editing on a version of this article.
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