J Am Acad Audiol 2019; 30(05): 357-362
DOI: 10.3766/jaaa.17089
Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

Impact of Stimulus Polarity on oVEMP Response Using the Belly-Tendon Electrode Montage

Daniel J. Romero
*   Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL
Blythe H. Kitner
*   Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL
Matthew J. Wilson
*   Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL
Kaylee J. Smith
†   Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, MI
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

24 October 2018

07 December 2018

Publication Date:
26 May 2020 (online)



One stimulus parameter not well established with respect to the ocular vestibular evoked myogenic potential (oVEMP) is stimulus polarity. Many research studies traditionally record oVEMPs using alternating polarity primarily.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of stimulus polarity on the oVEMP response under three different conditions (condensation, rarefaction, and alternating) with updated but established recording procedures—the belly-tendon electrode montage.

Research Design:

oVEMPs were assessed with changes in stimulus polarity in the seated upright position.

Study Sample:

Thirty otologically normal participants (60 ears) with no history of hearing or balance disorders and normal middle ear function.

Data Collection and Analysis:

Five hundred–hertz air-conducted tone bursts at 95-dB nHL were used to evoke the oVEMP response while recordings were made from the contralateral eye to acoustical stimulation using the belly-tendon electrode montage. Measurements were made using three polarities: alternating, condensation, and rarefaction. Natus Bio-logic AEP hardware and software was used for all data collection and analysis.


Condensation stimulus phase provided the largest response amplitude compared with alternating and/or rarefaction. Rarefaction provided the earliest latency among stimulus polarities.


Condensation is a more effective stimulus polarity regarding response amplitude when recording the oVEMP. This study further supports the use of the belly-tendon electrode montage for recording the oVEMP response.

Presented in part as a research poster at the American Balance Society Meeting, Scottsdale, AZ, February 28, 2017.


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