Distortion product otoacoustic emissions and tympanometric measurements in an adult population-based study.
ABSTRACT Otoacoustic emissions (OAEs) are useful clinical tools that can be used as a test to reflect hearing, especially cochlear function. When OAEs are recorded, the sound energy is conducted inwards and outwards through the middle ear system, but the degree to which the middle ear condition affects the OAEs level remains obscure. The objectives of the present study were to estimate the effect of the condition of the middle ear expressed by multifrequency tympanometry on the distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs) adjusting for age and the corresponding pure-tone thresholds.
The evaluation was conducted using 1,043 subjects without a history of ear disease or occupational noise exposure out of a population-based sample of 2,259 adults aged 40-82 years. Multifrequency tympanometry, DPOAEs, and pure-tone audiometry were administered. The resonance frequency (RF), static admittance (SA) and tympanometric peak pressure (PP) were taken as variables representing middle ear function. Subjects were categorized into three groups of variables < or = 5th percentile, between 5th and 95th percentile, and > or = 95th percentile. The signal-to-noise ratio in DPOAE levels were compared among three groups adjusting for age and the pure-tone threshold level.
Both abnormally high and low RF exerted a negative effect on DPOAEs. Smaller RF values were related to smaller DPOAEs for the frequency around 1000 Hz, and greater RF values were related to smaller DPOAEs for the frequency around 4000 Hz. The tendency was similar between genders. Abnormally high SA had a negative influence on DPOAEs, while abnormally low SA had no significant effect on either gender. Smaller PP values were significantly related to smaller DPOAEs.
We interpreted the findings of the present study as verification of the effect of the condition of the middle ear on DPOAEs after adjustment for age and the pure-tone threshold level, although ears out of normal range in tympanometric variables might conceivably include not only middle ear dysfunction but also inner ear abnormality. Tympanometric assessment must always be taken into account when OAEs are analyzed for an estimation of the cochlea function.
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ABSTRACT: Whole body vibration (WBV) is a potentially harmful consequence resulting from the dissipation of energy by industrial machineries. The result of WBV exposure on the auditory system remains unknown. The objective of the present research was to evaluate the influence of WBV on cochlear function, in particular outer hair cell function. It is hypothesized that WBV impairs cochlear function resulting in decreased Distortion Product Otoacoustic Emission (DPOAE) levels (Ldp) in rabbits subjected to WBV. Twelve rabbits were equally divided into vibration and control groups. Animals in vibration group were exposed to 1.0 ms-2 r.m.s vertical WBV at 4-8 Hz for 8 h/day during 5 consecutive days. Outer hair cell function was assessed by comparing repeated-measurements of DPOAE levels (Ldp) across a range of f2 frequencies in rabbits both exposed and unexposed to WBV. DPOAE level shifts (LSdp) were compared across ears, frequencies, groups, and times. No differences were seen over time in DPOAE levels in the non-exposed rabbits (p = 0.082). Post-exposure Ldp in rabbits exposed to WBV were significantly increased at all test frequencies in both ears compared to baseline measures (p = 0.021). The greatest increase in Ldp following exposure was seen at 5888.5 Hz (mean shift = 13.25 dB). Post-exposure Ldp in rabbits exposed to WBV were not significantly different between the right and left ears (p = 0.083). WBV impairs cochlear function resulting in increased DPOAE responses in rabbits exposed to WBV. DPOAE level shifts occurred over a wide range of frequencies following prolonged WBV in rabbits.Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology 06/2012; 7(1):12.