A critical review of hearing-aid single-microphone noise-reduction studies in adults and children

Foong Yen Chong, Lorienne M. Jenstad

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Purpose: Single-microphone noise reduction (SMNR) is implemented in hearing aids to suppress background noise. The purpose of this article was to provide a critical review of peer-reviewed studies in adults and children with sensorineural hearing loss who were fitted with hearing aids incorporating SMNR. Method: Articles published between 2000 and 2016 were searched in PUBMED and EBSCO databases. Results: Thirty-two articles were included in the final review. Most studies with adult participants showed that SMNR has no effect on speech intelligibility. Positive results were reported for acceptance of background noise, preference, and listening effort. Studies of school-aged children were consistent with the findings of adult studies. No study with infants or young children of under 5 years old was found. Recent studies on noise-reduction systems not yet available in wearable hearing aids have documented benefits of noise reduction on memory for speech processing for older adults. Conclusions: This evidence supports the use of SMNR for adults and school-aged children when the aim is to improve listening comfort or reduce listening effort. Future research should test SMNR with infants and children who are younger than 5 years of age. Further development, testing, and clinical trials should be carried out on algorithms not yet available in wearable hearing aids. Testing higher cognitive level for speech processing and learning of novel sounds or words could show benefits of advanced signal processing features. These approaches should be expanded to other populations such as children and younger adults.Implications for rehabilitation The review provides a quick reference for students and clinicians regarding the efficacy and effectiveness of SMNR in wearable hearing aids. This information is useful during counseling session to build a realistic expectation among hearing aid users. Most studies in the adult population suggest that SMNR may provide some benefits to adult listeners in terms of listening comfort, acceptance of background noise, and release of cognitive load in a complex listening condition. However, it does not improve speech intelligibility. Studies that examined SMNR in the paediatric population suggest that SMNR may benefit older school-aged children, aged between 10 and 12 years old. The evidence supports the use of SMNR for adults and school-aged children when the aim is to improve listening comfort or reduce listening effort.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)600-608
Number of pages9
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology
Volume13
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2018

Fingerprint

Hearing aids
Hearing Aids
Microphones
Noise abatement
Noise
Speech intelligibility
Speech processing
Speech Intelligibility
Pediatrics
Population
Audition
Testing
Peer Review
Patient rehabilitation
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Signal processing

Keywords

  • adult
  • children
  • Hearing aids
  • review
  • single-microphone noise reduction
  • speech intelligibility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation
  • Speech and Hearing

Cite this

A critical review of hearing-aid single-microphone noise-reduction studies in adults and children. / Chong, Foong Yen; Jenstad, Lorienne M.

In: Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology, Vol. 13, No. 6, 18.08.2018, p. 600-608.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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