A Signal-to-Noise Ratio Model for the Speech-Reception Threshold of the Hearing Impaired This paper reviews the results of a series of investigations inspired by a model of the speech-reception threshold (SRT) of hearing-impaired listeners. The model contains two parameters accounting for the SRT of normal-hearing listeners (SRT in quiet and signal-to-noise ratio corresponding to the threshold at high noise levels), two parameters ... Research Article
EDITOR'S AWARD
Research Article  |   June 01, 1986
A Signal-to-Noise Ratio Model for the Speech-Reception Threshold of the Hearing Impaired
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Reinier Plomp
    Free University Hospital, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 1986
A Signal-to-Noise Ratio Model for the Speech-Reception Threshold of the Hearing Impaired
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1986, Vol. 29, 146-154. doi:10.1044/jshr.2902.146
History: Received June 6, 1985 , Accepted October 17, 1985
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1986, Vol. 29, 146-154. doi:10.1044/jshr.2902.146
History: Received June 6, 1985; Accepted October 17, 1985

This paper reviews the results of a series of investigations inspired by a model of the speech-reception threshold (SRT) of hearing-impaired listeners. The model contains two parameters accounting for the SRT of normal-hearing listeners (SRT in quiet and signal-to-noise ratio corresponding to the threshold at high noise levels), two parameters describing the hearing loss (attenuation and threshold elevation in terms of signal-to-noise ratio), and three parameters describing the hearing aid (acoustic gain, threshold elevation expressed in signal-to-noise ratio, and equivalent internal noise level). Experimental data are reported for three different types of hearing impairment: presbycusis, hearing losses with a pathological origin, and noise-induced losses. The model gives an excellent description of the data. It demonstrates that for many hearing-impaired persons speech intelligibility at noise levels beyond 50 to 60 dB(A) is their main problem, whereas hearing aids are most effective below that noise level.

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