An Examination of Changes in Hearing-Aid Performance and Benefit in the Elderly Over a 3-Year Period of Hearing-Aid Use

Humes, Larry E.; Wilson, Dana L.
February 2003
Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research;Feb2003, Vol. 46 Issue 1, p137
Academic Journal
This brief report describes the changes in hearing-aid performance and benefit in 9 elderly hearing-aid wearers over a 3-year period following the hearing-aid fitting. Objective measures of hearing-aid performance included three measures of speech recognition: (a) the Nonsense Syllable Test (NST) presented at 65 dB SPL and a +8 dB signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), (b) the Connected Speech Test (CST) presented at 50 dB SPL in quiet, and (c) the CST presented at 65 dB SPL and a +8 dB SNR. Subjective, self-report measures of hearing-aid benefit included the Hearing Aid Performance Inventory (HAPI; B. E. Walden, M. E. Demorest, & E. L. Helper, 1984) and the Hearing Handicap Inventory for the Elderly (HHIE; I. Ventry & B. Weinstein, 1982). Performance and benefit measures were obtained at postfit intervals of 1 month, 6 months, 1 year, 2 years, and 3 years using a standardized measurement protocol. Individual data were evaluated using 95% critical differences established previously for each benefit measure and applied around the scores observed at the 1-month postfit interval. Little evidence was seen for systematic improvement in aided performance or benefit, consistent with that expected from acclimatization, in any participant or for any measure of benefit.


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