Effects of consecutive wideband tympanometry trials on energy absorbance measures of the middle ear
Burdiek, Laina M.
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Burdiek, Laina M.; Sun, Xiao-Ming. 2014. Effects of consecutive wideband tympanometry trials on energy absorbance measures of the middle ear. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2014, Vol. 57:no. 5, 1997-2004
Purpose: Wideband acoustic immittance (WAI) is a new technique for assessing middle ear transfer function. It includes energy absorbance (EA) measures and can be acquired with the ear canal pressure varied, known as wideband tympanometry (WBTymp). The authors of this study aimed to investigate effects of consecutive WBTymp testing on EA. Method: Data were collected in 29 young adults with normal hearing and middle ear status. Before and after 8 successive WBTymp runs, EA was also measured at ambient pressure. Subsequently, two 226-Hz tympanometry tests were performed. Results: EA systematically changed over the WBTymp trials in a frequency-specific manner: increase for low frequencies (below 1.5 kHz) and decrease for high frequencies (around 2 kHz and 5 to 6 kHz). The changes, although small, were significant. Much larger EA changes were measured at ambient pressure. The test-retest difference of 226-Hz tympanogram measures was much smaller than previously reported. Conclusion: Consecutive tympanometry testing alters EA measures of the middle ear. This phenomenon could be mainly attributed to change in stiffness at the eardrum, called tympanometric preconditioning. This also has effects on baseline WBTymp outcomes. This effect should be taken into account as a procedural variable in both research and clinical applications of WAI measurements.
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