Using Average Correction Factors to Improve the Estimated Sound Pressure Level Near the Tympanic Membrane
Research, Starkey Hearing Technologies.Journal of the American Academy of Audiology (Impact Factor: 1.58). 10/2012; 23(9):733-50. DOI: 10.3766/jaaa.23.9.7
Background: Sound pressure-based real ear measurements are considered best practice for ensuring audibility among individuals fitting hearing aids. The accuracy of current methods is generally considered clinically acceptable for frequencies up to about 4 kHz. Recent interest in the potential benefits of higher frequencies has brought about a need for an improved, and clinically feasible, method of ensuring audibility for higher frequencies. Purpose: To determine whether (and the extent to which) average correction factors could be used to improve the estimated high-frequency sound pressure level (SPL) near the tympanic membrane (TM). Research Design: For each participant, real ear measurements were made along the ear canal, at 2-16 mm from the TM, in 2-mm increments. Custom in-ear monitors were used to present a stimulus with frequency components up to 16 kHz. Study Sample: Twenty adults with normal middle-ear function participated in this study. Intervention: Two methods of creating and implementing correction factors were tested. Data Collection and Analysis: For Method 1, correction factors were generated by normalizing all of the measured responses along the ear canal to the 2-mm response. From each normalized response, the frequency of the pressure minimum was determined. This frequency was used to estimate the distance to the TM, based on the ¼ wavelength of that frequency. All of the normalized responses with similar estimated distances to the TM were grouped and averaged. The inverse of these responses served as correction factors. To apply the correction factors, the only required information was the frequency of the pressure minimum. Method 2 attempted to, at least partially, account for individual differences in TM impedance, by taking into consideration the frequency and the width of the pressure minimum. Because of the strong correlation between a pressure minimum's width and depth, this method effectively resulted in a group of average normalized responses with different pressure-minimum depths. The inverse of these responses served as correction factors. To apply the correction factors, it was necessary to know both the frequency and the width of the pressure minimum. For both methods, the correction factors were generated using measurements from one group of ten individuals and verified using measurements from a second group of ten individuals. Results: Applying the correction factors resulted in significant improvements in the estimated SPL near the TM for both methods. Method 2 had the best accuracy. For frequencies up to 10 kHz, 95% of measurements had <8 dB of error, which is comparable to the accuracy of real ear measurement methods that are currently used clinically below 4 kHz. Conclusions: Average correction factors can be successfully applied to measurements made along the ear canals of otologically healthy adults, to improve the accuracy of the estimated SPL near the TM in the high frequencies. Further testing is necessary to determine whether these correction factors are appropriate for pediatrics or individuals with conductive hearing losses.
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Sound pressure distributions in the human ear canal, whether unoccluded or occluded with ear molds, were studied using a probe tube technique. On average, for frequencies below 6 kHz, the measuring probe tube had to be placed within 8 mm of the vertical plane containing the top of the eardrum (TOD), determined optically, in order to obtain sound pressure magnitudes within 6 dB of "eardrum pressure." To obtain that accuracy in all of the eight subjects studied, the probe had to be within 6 mm of the TOD. Since probe location relative to the drum has to be known, a purely acoustic method was developed which can be conveniently used to localize the probe-tip position, utilizing the standing wave property of the sound pressure in the ear canal. The acoustically estimated "drum location" generally lay between the optically determined vertical planes containing the TOD and the umbo. On average, the "drum location" fell 1 mm medial to the TOD. Of the 32 estimates made acoustically in various occluded and unoccluded conditions in 14 subjects, 30 estimates lay within a +/- 2-mm range of this average.The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 04/1990; 87(3):1237-47. DOI:10.1121/1.398799 · 1.50 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: When making acoustic measurements in a human ear canal, it is often necessary to monitor the output of a sound source with a microphone positioned within a few millimeters of that sound source. This microphone will not only measure the pressure due to the propagated acoustic wave, which we wish to measure, but also the pressure due to the evanescent wave. The pressure due to the evanescent wave can be viewed as a source of error in the measurement of the propagating acoustic wave. This paper attempts to quantify the magnitude of this error. Theoretical predictions are made of the relative level of the evanescent sound pressure in a number of source and microphone arrangements applicable to ear canal measurements. It is shown that these theoretical predictions represent an upper limit of evanescent sound pressure that can be measured experimentally. The maximum measurement error due to the presence of the evanescent wave in human ear canals below 10 kHz is predicted to be 3 dB in adults and 1.3 dB in 1 month old infants, when the loudspeaker and microphone ports are spaced more than 2 mm apart.The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 05/1997; 101(4):2164-75. DOI:10.1121/1.418244 · 1.50 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The sound power per unit cross-sectional area was determined in human ear canals using a new method based on measuring the pressure distribution (P) along the length of variable cross-section acoustic waveguides. The technique provides the pressure/power reflection coefficients (R/R) as well as the acoustic intensity of the nonplanar incident wave (I+, the acoustic input to the ear) and the nonplanar outgoing wave (I-, the acoustic output of the ear). Results were compared to the classical acoustic impedance (Z) and associated plane-wave power reflection coefficient (R(Z)). Performance of the method was investigated theoretically using horn equation simulations and evaluated experimentally using pressure data recorded in nonuniform waveguides. The method was applied in normal-hearing young adults to determine ear-canal position- and frequency-dependence of I(+/-), R, and R(Z) using random phase broadband stimuli (1-15 kHz; approximately 75 dB SPL). Reflection coefficient (R) measurements at two different locations within individual human ear canals exhibited a position dependence averaging deltaR approximately 0.1 (over 6 mm distance)--a difference consistent with predictions of inviscid acoustics in nonuniform waveguides. Since this position dependence was relatively small, an "optimized" position-independent reflection coefficient was defined to facilitate practical application and intersubject comparisons.The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 09/2002; 112(2):600-20. DOI:10.1121/1.1494445 · 1.50 Impact Factor
Data provided are for informational purposes only. Although carefully collected, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. The impact factor represents a rough estimation of the journal's impact factor and does not reflect the actual current impact factor. Publisher conditions are provided by RoMEO. Differing provisions from the publisher's actual policy or licence agreement may be applicable.