Distortion-Product Otoacoustic Emissions in Humans with High Frequency Sensorineural Hearing Loss Distortion-product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs) and pure-tone behavioral thresholds were compared in 20 ears with normal hearing and in 20 ears with high-frequency sensorineural hearing loss. The purpose was to determine if DPOAE amplitude is associated with pure-tone behavioral threshold. Comparison of results from the two groups of ears indicated that ... Research Article
Research Article  |   September 01, 1990
Distortion-Product Otoacoustic Emissions in Humans with High Frequency Sensorineural Hearing Loss
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • F. P. Harris
    HNO-Universitätsklinik, Kantonsspital, Basel, Switzerland
  • Requests for reprints may be sent to Frances P. Harris, Ph.D., HNO-Klinik Kantonsspital Basel, CH-4031, Basel Switzerland.
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Research Articles
Research Article   |   September 01, 1990
Distortion-Product Otoacoustic Emissions in Humans with High Frequency Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1990, Vol. 33, 594-600. doi:10.1044/jshr.3303.594
History: Received October 24, 1989 , Accepted April 13, 1990
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1990, Vol. 33, 594-600. doi:10.1044/jshr.3303.594
History: Received October 24, 1989; Accepted April 13, 1990

Distortion-product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs) and pure-tone behavioral thresholds were compared in 20 ears with normal hearing and in 20 ears with high-frequency sensorineural hearing loss. The purpose was to determine if DPOAE amplitude is associated with pure-tone behavioral threshold. Comparison of results from the two groups of ears indicated that DPOAEs were reduced in amplitude or were absent in ears with high-frequency hearing loss. The differences occurred at frequencies above 1,500 Hz. Comparing results from 750 to 8,000 Hz within the same ear revealed a frequency-related correspondence of elevated behavioral threshold to reduced DPOAE amplitude. When behavioral thresholds were better than 20 dB HL, DPOAE amplitude was within the range (±2 SDs) determined for the ears with normal hearing. When pure-tone threshold was greater than 50 dB HL, DPOAEs were absent or were significantly attenuated in 16/17 subjects (94%). The association of emission level with behavioral threshold level was variable when threshold was between these two extremes. Results imply that the measurement of DPOAEs has clinical potential as a means of detecting hearing loss by frequency.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
This study was based on a dissertation completed in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the PhD in the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, University of Arizona. The valuable assistance of T. J. Glattke, R. Probst, P. Schumacher, and the Cochlear and Vestibular Function Lab at Baylor College of
Medicine is gratefully acknowledged. Reviews by L. Humes and two anonymous reviewers were extremely beneficial. Portions of this manuscript were presented at the 116th meeting of the Acoustical Society of America, and at the 2nd International Symposium of Cochlear Mechanics and Otoacoustic Emissions.
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