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Auditory Deprivation in Adults with Asymmetric, Sensorineural Hearing Impairment
07 August 2020 (online)
The purpose of this investigation was to prospectively examine performance on the pure-tone air-conduction threshold, speech-recognition threshold, and suprathreshold word-recognition tests over time in 21 monaurally aided (experimental group) and 28 unaided adults (control group) with asymmetric, sensorineural hearing impairment.
The results revealed significant declines on the mean suprathreshold word-recognition scores over time at one and two years post-baseline for the worse ears of the control participants; no declines occurred in the worse ears of the experimental participants or in the better ears of either group. A slight, significant increase in the pure-tone average occurred for the better ears of both groups. The findings are consistent with the presence of an auditory deprivation effect on suprathreshold word-recognition ability in the control group, suggesting that lack of amplification leads to decline in word-recognition performance over time in the worse ears of adults with asymmetric sensorineural hearing impairment.