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Three cases of Hearing Impairment with surprising subjective improvements after Prayer. What can we say when analyzing them?

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Aim to enhance the understanding of documented mismatches between ‘subjective’ experiences and ‘objective’ data in three cases of self-reported instantaneous healing of hearing impairment upon prayer. Method description of three cases taken out of a larger retrospective case-based study of prayer healing in the Netherlands. In this larger study multiple reported healings were investigated using both medical files and patients’ narratives through in-depth interviews. A subset of three cases with dramatic subjective reduction of hearing impairment upon prayer was studied. These patients underwent extensive additional investigations at the audiology center of the Amsterdam University Medical Centre. All data was evaluated by an interdisciplinary medical assessment team, subsequent analysis was transdisciplinary. Results the three case histories with self-reported healing after prayer demonstrated a clear mismatch between subjective experiences and objective findings. No measurable improvements were found in four different audiological testing methods. However, in-depth interviews, hetero-anamnesis and a validated questionnaire all confirmed the healings. The medical assessment team could not label these healings as ‘medically remarkable’ because of absence of measurable ‘objective’ changes, but they did consider them as ‘remarkable in a broader sense’. On expert consultation no equivalents of mismatches to this extent could be found. The healing experiences of our participants involved their entire being with profound positive effects in different domains of their lives, and a perception of a benevolent God who acted upon them. There was a distinctive pattern, labelled by the participants as a healing of mind, soul and body. Conclusions The subjective-objective incongruities that were found were not well understood. We noticed a paradox: the ‘objective’ measurements did not reflect hearing abilities in daily life where-as ‘subjective experiential’ data did. The latter could be ‘objectified’ and validated in various ways. In fact, a rigid distinction between ‘objective’ and ‘subjective’ was not relevant here, nor a hierarchy among them. A model leaving room for different causations (horizontal epistemology) complied best with the multi dimensionality we came across.

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... Another important finding was the repeated mismatch between 'subjective' and 'objective' data, which was also discussed in previous articles. 15,16 It is important to note that this study is about a subgroup of people praying for healing. All participants experienced a healing which they related to prayer and they decided to report the event. ...
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The setting between 2015 and 2020 a medical assessment team evaluated 27 reports of prayer healing in the Netherlands. Objectives Three research questions were formulated. What are the medical and experiential findings? Are there medically remarkable and/or unexplained healings? Which explanatory frameworks can help us understand the findings? Methods The reported healings were analyzed using both medical files and patient narratives, as part of a case study research design compiled by a multidisciplinary research team. An independent team of five medical consultants, representing different fields of expertise, evaluated the 27 case files. According to criteria these were selected from a larger group of 83 received reports. Experiential data was obtained by in-depth interviews and analyzed. Instances of healing could be classified as ‘medically remarkable’ or ‘medically unexplained’. Subsequent analysis was transdisciplinary. Results Eleven of the 27 healings assessed were evaluated as ‘medically remarkable’, none were labelled as ‘medically unexplained’. Recurring characteristics were common to some degree in all healings, whether ‘medically remarkable’ or not: a temporal connection with prayer, instantaneity and unexpectedness of healing, strong emotional and physical manifestations, and a sense of ‘being overwhelmed’ and transformed. The healings were invariably interpreted as acts of God. Positive effects have persisted for 5 to 33 years, with 2 relapses. Conclusions Our findings on remarkable healings do not fit well in the traditional biomedical conceptual framework. All healings exhibited important non-medical aspects, whether or not they were assessed as medically remarkable. We need a broader multi-perspective approach in which all relevant data is considered to be valuable, both experiential and objective. This so-called horizontal epistemology may be helpful when trying to understand the findings, and it may bring about mutual understanding between patients, health practitioners and relevant disciplines.
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This study investigated the psychometric adequacy of the (modified) Amsterdam Inventory for Auditory Disability and Handicap ((m)AIAD). The original version of the AIAD was developed by Kramer et al in 1995. Special emphasis was placed on the statistical aspects of the scores, because these properties place limits on the clinical utility of the instrument. The AIAD is a self-assessment questionnaire that consists of 30 questions covering all the relevant factors of disability in individual hearing functioning in daily life. This paper reports data from 94 subjects, aged 17–65 years, with different hearing abilities, who completed a modified version of the AIAD and the Hearing Disability Questionnaire (HDQ), on two occasions 1 month apart. The psychometric adequacy of the AIAD was determined by measuring its reliability and validity. Factor analysis was performed, and the reliability was tested by measuring internal consistency, split-half correlation, and test-retest reproducibility. The validity was tested by measuring construct and criterion validity. The results showed that the reliability of the (m)AIAD was highly satisfactory, with good internal consistency, high split-half correlations, and high test-retest correlations. Construct validity showed a high correlation between scores on the (m)AIAD and scores on the HDQ. Criterion validity showed a moderate but significant correlation between scores on the (m)AIAD and hearing thresholds in dB HL. Este estudio investiga la idoneidad psicométrica del Inventario (modificado) de Amsterdam para Discapacidad y Desventaja Auditiva [(m)AIAD]. La versión original del AIAD fue desarrollada por Kramer y col. en 1995. Se otorgó un énfasis especial a los aspectos estadísticos de las puntuaciones, porque estas propiedades plantean limites a la utilidad clinica del instrumento. El AIAD es un cuestionario de auto-evaluación que consiste de 30 preguntas que cubren todos los aspectos relevantes sobre discapacidad en el funcionamiento auditivo individual en la vida cotidiana. Este trabajo reporta información sobre 94 sujetos, con edades entre 17–65 años, con diferentes habilidades auditivas, quienes completaron una versión modificada del AIAD y del Cuestionario sobre Discapacidad Auditiva (HDQ), en dos ocasiones, con un mes de intervalo. La idoneidad psicométrica del AIAD fue determinada midiendo su confiabilidad y validez. Se realizó un análisis de factores y la confiabilidad fue evaluada midiendo la consistencia interna, la correlación split-half, y la reproducibilidad evaluación-reevaluación. La validez fue evaluada midiendo la construcción y los criterios de validez. Los resultados muestran que la confiabilidad del (m) A1DAD fue altamente satisfactoria, con buena consistencia interna, altas correlaciones split-half, y alta correlación evaluación-reevaluación. La validez de construcción mostró una alta correlación entre los puntajes en el (m)AIAD y los puntajes en el HDQ. La validez de criterio mostró una correlación moderada pero significativa entre las puntuaciones en el (m)AIDAD y los umbrales auditivos en dB HL.
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This article examines the cures recorded in Lourdes, France, between 1858, the year of the Visions, and 1976, the date of the last certified cure of the twentieth century. Initially, the records of cures were crude or nonexistent, and allegations of cures were accepted without question. A Medical Bureau was established in 1883 to examine and certify the cures, and the medical methodology improved steadily in the subsequent years. We discuss the clinical criteria of the cures and the reliability of medical records. Some 1,200 cures were said to have been observed between 1858 and 1889, and about one hundred more each year during the “Golden Age” of Lourdes, 1890–1914. We studied 411 patients cured in 1909–14 and thoroughly reviewed the twenty-five cures acknowledged between 1947 and 1976. No cure has been certified from 1976 through 2006. The Lourdes phenomenon, extraordinary in many respects, still awaits scientific explanation. Lourdes concerns science as well as religion.
Article
This paper summarizes twenty studies, published since 1989, that have measured experimentally the relationship between speech recognition in noise and some aspect of cognition, using statistical techniques such as correlation or factor analysis. The results demonstrate that there is a link, but it is secondary to the predictive effects of hearing loss, and it is somewhat mixed across study. No one cognitive test always gave a significant result, but measures of working memory (especially reading span) were mostly effective, whereas measures of general ability, such as IQ, were mostly ineffective. Some of the studies included aided listening, and two reported the benefits from aided listening: again mixed results were found, and in some circumstances cognition was a useful predictor of hearing-aid benefit.
Article
Tone thresholds and speech-reception thresholds were measured in 200 individuals (400 ears) with noise-induced hearing loss. The speech-reception thresholds were measured in a quiet condition and in noise with a speech spectrum at levels of 35, 50, 65, and 80 dBA. The tone audiograms could be described by three principal components: hearing loss in the regions above 3 kHz, from 1 to 3 kHz and below 1 kHz; the speech thresholds could be described by two components: speech reception in quiet and speech reception in noise at 50-80 dBA. Hearing loss above 1 kHz was related to speech reception in noise; hearing loss at and below 1 kHz to speech reception in quiet. The correlation between the speech thresholds in quiet and in noise was only R = 0.45. An adequate predictor of the speech threshold in noise, the primary factor in the hearing handicap, was the pure-tone average at 2 and 4 kHz (PTA2,4, R = 0.72). The minimum value of the prediction error for any tone-audiometric predictor of this speech threshold was 1.2 dB (standard deviation). The prediction could not be improved by taking into account the critical ratio for low-frequency noise nor by its upward spread of masking. The prediction error is due to measurement error and to a factor common to both ears. The latter factor is ascribed to cognitive skill in speech reception. Hearing loss above 10 to 15 dB HL (hearing level) already shows an effect on the speech threshold in noise, a noticeable handicap is found at PTA2,4 = 30 dB HL.
Article
Two experiments in which time was restored to artificially accelerated (time-compressed) speech are reported. Experiment 1 showed that although both young and older adults' recall of the speech benefited from the restoration of time, time restoration failed to boost the older adults to their baseline levels for unaltered speech. In Experiment 2, either 100% or 125% of lost time was restored by inserting pauses, either at linguistic boundaries or at random points within the passages. Experiment 2 showed that the beneficial effects of time restoration depended on where processing time was inserted, as well as how much time was restored. Results are interpreted in terms of age-related slowing in speech processing moderated by preserved linguistic knowledge and short-term conceptual memory.
Article
Psychological approaches to improving vision present an enticing alternative to invasive procedures and corrective lenses; hypnotic suggestion is one such technique. During the past 60 years, multiple studies have documented improvements in the vision of myopic individuals after hypnotic interventions. Given the increasing interest in behavioral and alternative approaches, we have reviewed the pertinent studies to evaluate their validity. We delineate various shortcomings in these reports, including potential methodological caveats, problems with experimental controls, and controversial data interpretation. Overall, the data do not seem to support hypnosis as a viable option for significant long-term improvement of myopia. However, hypnosis can increase one's subjective feeling of enhanced visual acuity by affecting higher cognitive functions, such as attention, memorization, and perceptual learning, which could influence performance on visual tasks.
Article
Encouraging participation by older people in the process of conducting research in the aged care field is paramount for developing an understanding of their experience. While some authors have recognized member checking as a way of ensuring participation in the research process, little information is available on how to conduct it. In this article a pilot study is described in which two older women discuss their experiences around receiving support services in their own home. In-depth and member checking interviews were undertaken, which were informed by Heidegger's interpretive hermeneutic phenomenology. In this study a methodology for conducting member checks is developed that is consistent with participatory approaches and the active negotiation of meaning inherent in this paradigm.
Auditief functioneren op de werkplek. Functie en pathologie van het gehoor
  • Goverts
Of miracles which were wrought that the world might believe in Christ and which have not ceased since the world believed. The City of God, book XXII
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Augustine St. Of Miracles Which Were Wrought that the World Might Believe in Christ and Which Have not Ceased Since the World Believed. The City of God, book XXII, Ch 8.
US, 1992; God can do it again
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Kuhlman K. I believe in miracles.Bridge-Logos, Gainesville (FL), US, 1992; God can do it again. Bridge-Logos, Gainesville (FL), US, 1993; Nothing is impossible with God. Bridge-Logos, Gainesville (FL), US, 1999.
Functie en pathologie van het gehoor
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  • Auditief Functioneren Op De Werkplek
Goverts ST, Kramer SE Auditief functioneren op de werkplek. Functie en pathologie van het gehoor. Quintesse 2017-1:6-11.
Life and Miracles of Saint Basil of Ostrog, with brief History of the Ostrog Monastery
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Nikchevich V. Life and Miracles of Saint Basil of Ostrog, with brief History of the Ostrog Monastery. Svetigora Press, Cetinje, Montenegro 2012 (463pp).
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Dossey L. Miracle Healings. Explore 2018; 14(5):315-320.