Objective comparative analysis of self-fit personal sound amplification products (PSAPs) using three types of fitting protocols: out-of-the-box self-fit, advanced-user self-fit, and audiologist fit
Links to Fileshttp://library.towson.edu/digital/collection/etd/id/59544
MetadataShow full item record
Type of Workapplication/pdf
xiii, 100 pages
DepartmentTowson University. Department of Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology and Deaf Studies
The purpose of this pilot study was to compare the objective benefit of two self-fit advanced PSAPs (Soundhawk and CS 50+) versus an audiologist fitting of these devices. Nine participants with slight to moderate sensorineural hearing loss were evaluated with both devices in each fitting condition. Electroacoustic analysis was performed for each PSAP device prior to each test session. Each participant was evaluated in the unaided and aided condition using the AzBio speech-in-noise test. Real-ear measurements were obtained and compared to NAL-NL2 targets using descriptive statistics and a 3-frequency root mean square (3-RMS) value for the NAL-NL2 targets met in each condition. Lastly, the relationship, if any, between the 3 RMS values and aided AzBio score improvement was explored. The electroacoustic measures for both PSAP devices were in relatively good agreement with the manufacturers’ specifications. The mean aided AzBio scores showed an improvement over the mean unaided scores in all test conditions for both PSAP devices. The greatest mean aided AzBio improvement occurred in the gold-standard fitting condition for both devices: Soundhawk (18%) and CS 50+ (15%). During real-ear measurements, the highest total percentages of NAL targets were met in the gold-standard fitting condition for both devices: Soundhawk (64%) and CS 50+ (69%). The lowest mean 3-RMS values also occurred in the gold-standard fitting condition, reflecting the greatest accuracy in meeting NAL targets. In addition, the highest positive correlation between a low RMS value (i.e., good fit) and greater aided improvement in AzBio scores occurred in the gold-standard fitting protocol. However, this relationship did not reach statistical significance for either device. Collectively, the results of the current pilot study are in good agreement with recent preliminary studies and suggest that advanced PSAPs have the ability to meet NAL prescribed targets and may offer improvement in speech-in-noise performance for individuals with slight to moderate sensorineural hearing impairments. This pilot study also suggests that the audiologists’ fine-tuning of advanced PSAPs results in the greatest accuracy in meeting NAL prescribed targets and the greatest improvement in speech-in-noise performance.