Individual Differences in Auditory Brainstem Response Wave Characteristics: Relations to Different Aspects of Peripheral Hearing Loss

Trends in Hearing
Sarah VerhulstFrauke Ernst

Abstract

Little is known about how outer hair cell loss interacts with noise-induced and age-related auditory nerve degradation (i.e., cochlear synaptopathy) to affect auditory brainstem response (ABR) wave characteristics. Given that listeners with impaired audiograms likely suffer from mixtures of these hearing deficits and that ABR amplitudes have successfully been used to isolate synaptopathy in listeners with normal audiograms, an improved understanding of how different hearing pathologies affect the ABR source generators will improve their sensitivity in hearing diagnostics. We employed a functional model for human ABRs in which different combinations of hearing deficits were simulated and show that high-frequency cochlear gain loss steepens the slope of the ABR Wave-V latency versus intensity and amplitude versus intensity curves. We propose that grouping listeners according to a ratio of these slope metrics (i.e., the ABR growth ratio) might offer a way to factor out the outer hair cell loss deficit and maximally relate individual differences for constant ratios to other peripheral hearing deficits such as cochlear synaptopathy. We compared the model predictions to recorded click-ABRs from 30 participants with normal or high-fre...Continue Reading

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Methods Mentioned

BETA
sedation

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