Investigation of Anatomical Correlates of Speech Discrimination
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Understanding speech is essential for good communication. Individuals with hearing loss and poor speech discrimination often have little success with hearing aids because amplifying sound improves audibility, but not clarity of the speech signal. The purpose of this study is to determine the relative importance of the sensory cells of the inner ear and auditory neurons on speech discrimination performance in quiet and in noise. This information may be used as a predictor of hearing aid benefit. The investigators expect to find decreased speech understanding ability resulting from both loss of sensory cells and the loss of auditory neurons.
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Ages Eligible for Study:
18 Years to 100 Years (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:
Adult patients referred from the St. Elizabeth's Department of Otolaryngology and self-referred patients to the Audiology Clinic.
Normal hearing to moderate sensorineural hearing loss
Sufficient English proficiency to complete speech discrimination testing in English
Hearing loss less than a 45 dB HL pure tone average (average hearing thresholds at 500, 1000 and 2000 Hz)