Objective: Individuals with monaural hearing experience disadvantages compared with normal hearing counterparts because of the loss of the head shadow effect, the squelch effect, and binaural summation. In this study the Minimum Speech Test Battery (MSTB), a battery designed to document word recognition in bilaterally hearing impaired cochlear implant candidates, was administered to unilaterally hearing-impaired and normal hearing subjects to study its possible use in measuring hearing difficulty in monaural subjects. Study Design: Repeated measures design with the MSTB administered in sound-field in a sound-isolated booth in 1) quiet; 2) speech toward good ear, noise (+10 dB S/N) toward impaired ear; 3) speech toward impaired ear, noise toward good ear; and 4) bilateral speech and noise. Setting: Academic otologic practice. Patients: Ten adults with normal hearing and 10 adults with normal or near-normal hearing in one ear and profound hearing loss in the contralateral ear. Main Outcome Measures: The MSTB, composed of the Consonant-Nucleus-Consonant (CNC) test and the Hearing In Noise Test (HINT). Results: As expected, performance differences between the groups were not found in quiet conditions. Analysis of variance and regression analysis confirmed that the impaired group performed significantly worse than control subjects on HINT testing when noise was directed toward the good ear. Analysis of variance and regression analysis confirmed that the impaired group performed significantly worse than control subjects on CNC testing when noise was directed toward the good ear and in bilateral noise. Conclusions: The MSTB may be useful in measuring the hearing difficulty of patients with monaural hearing.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sensory Systems
- Clinical Neurology