Indexed on: 10 Mar '18Published on: 10 Mar '18Published in: Clinical and experimental otorhinolaryngology
Directional microphone technology can enhance the speech intelligibility and listening comfort of listeners with hearing impairment. The main aim of this study is to investigate and compare the benefit derived by listeners with severe hearing loss from directional microphone technology with that derived by listeners with moderate hearing loss. The acceptable noise levels (ANLs) of two groups of listeners with moderate or severe hearing impairment (17 subjects in each group) were measured under unaided, omnidirectional-baseline-aided, and directional-aided conditions. Although the absolute ANL of the listeners in the severe hearing loss group was significantly higher than that of the listeners in the moderate hearing loss group, their derived benefit was equivalent to that derived by the listeners in the moderate hearing loss group. ANL and hearing loss degree were significantly related. Specifically, the ANL increased with the severity of hearing loss. Directional microphone technology can provide the benefits of listening comfort to listeners with severe hearing loss.