Wideband Energy Reflectance Measurements in Adults With Middle-Ear Disorders The purpose of this study was to examine wideband energy reflectance (ER) at ambient pressure in adults with a variety of middle-ear disorders. The ER results from 9 participants with middle-ear disorders and 1 participant with bilateral sensorineural hearing loss were compared with data provided by a group of 40 ... Research Article
Research Article  |   August 01, 2003
Wideband Energy Reflectance Measurements in Adults With Middle-Ear Disorders
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • M. Patrick Feeney
    University of Washington, Seattle
  • Iain L. Grant
    The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Lindsay P. Marryott
    The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Contact author: M. Patrick Feeney, PhD, University of Washington, Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, V. M. Bloedel Hearing Research Center, P.O. Box 357923, Seattle, WA 98195-7923. E-mail: pfeeney@u.washington.edu
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 01, 2003
Wideband Energy Reflectance Measurements in Adults With Middle-Ear Disorders
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2003, Vol. 46, 901-911. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2003/070)
History: Received June 26, 2002 , Accepted January 24, 2003
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2003, Vol. 46, 901-911. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2003/070)
History: Received June 26, 2002; Accepted January 24, 2003
Web of Science® Times Cited: 70

The purpose of this study was to examine wideband energy reflectance (ER) at ambient pressure in adults with a variety of middle-ear disorders. The ER results from 9 participants with middle-ear disorders and 1 participant with bilateral sensorineural hearing loss were compared with data provided by a group of 40 young adults with normal hearing sensitivity. Wideband ER results for the participant with sensorineural hearing loss followed the typical pattern of the data for young adults with normal hearing. For the 9 participants with middle-ear disorders (13 ears), the wideband ER responses fell outside the 5th to 95th percentile of the normative data for some portion of the frequency range in patterns that were distinct for otitis media with effusion, otosclerosis, ossicular discontinuity, and perforation of the tympanic membrane. Two ears with hypermobile 226-Hz tympanograms and normal hearing sensitivity had low-frequency ER patterns similar to that of a patient with ossicular discontinuity. One participant with negative middle-ear pressure had high ER in the low frequencies. This distinct ER pattern was similar to the patterns produced by participants with otosclerosis, demonstrating that a correction for middle ear pressure will be important for the clinical application of ER. Overall, the results suggest that wideband ER may be useful as a diagnostic tool in the assessment of middle-ear disorders.

Acknowledgments
This work was supported by grants from the National Organization for Hearing Research Foundation and National Institutes of Health Grant R03 DC 04129. Douglas Keefe provided software for the collection of reflectance data. We wish to thank Angela Staley and Michael Starkey for assistance in data collection. Douglas Keefe and Robert Margolis provided data on average adult wideband reflectance from their earlier studies. Helpful comments on a draft of this article were provided by Douglas Keefe and Jont Allen. Portions of this study were presented at the annual meeting of the American Auditory Society, March 2003, in Scottsdale, AZ.
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