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Vent Configurations on Subjective and Objective Occlusion Effect
07 August 2020 (online)
The current study reexamined the effect of vent diameters on objective and subjective occlusion effect (OE) while minimizing two possible sources of variability. Nine hearing-impaired participants with primarily a high-frequency hearing loss were evaluated. Laser shell-making technology was used to make ear inserts of completely-in-the-canal (CIC) hearing aids for the study. This was to minimize any potential slit leakage from the inserts. The vent dimensions were systematically altered during the study. Participants sustained /i/ for 5 sec, and the real-ear occluded response was measured with a custom-made program that performed frequency averaging to reduce response variability. Participants also repeated the phrase "Baby Jeannie is teeny tiny" and rated their own voice. The results showed a systematic change in the objective OE and subjective ratings of OE as the vent diameter was modified. Furthermore, a significant correlation was seen between subjective rating and objective occlusion effect.