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9997017
Influence of Loudness Compression on Hearing with Bone Anchored Hearing Implants
Abstract:
Bone Anchored Hearing Implants (BAHI) are  routinely used in patients with conductive or mixed hearing loss, e.g.  if conventional air conduction hearing aids cannot be used. New  sound processors and new fitting software now allow the adjustment  of parameters such as loudness compression ratios or maximum  power output separately. Today it is unclear, how the choice of these  parameters influences aided speech understanding in BAHI users.  In this prospective experimental study, the effect of varying the  compression ratio and lowering the maximum power output in a  BAHI were investigated.  Twelve experienced adult subjects with a mixed hearing loss  participated in this study. Four different compression ratios (1.0; 1.3;  1.6; 2.0) were tested along with two different maximum power output  settings, resulting in a total of eight different programs. Each  participant tested each program during two weeks. A blinded Latin  square design was used to minimize bias.  For each of the eight programs, speech understanding in quiet and  in noise was assessed. For speech in quiet, the Freiburg number test  and the Freiburg monosyllabic word test at 50, 65, and 80 dB SPL  were used. For speech in noise, the Oldenburg sentence test was  administered.  Speech understanding in quiet and in noise was improved  significantly in the aided condition in any program, when compared  to the unaided condition. However, no significant differences were  found between any of the eight programs. In contrast, on a subjective  level there was a significant preference for medium compression  ratios of 1.3 to 1.6 and higher maximum power output.  
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References:

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