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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21-26

Influence of channel and ChannelFree™ processing technology on the vocal parameters in hearing-impaired individuals

1 Department of Speech and Hearing, Nitte Institute of Speech and Hearing Medical Science Complex, Mangalore, India
2 Department of Speech and Hearing, School of Allied Health Sciences, Manipal University, Manipal, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Gopika Kizhakke Kodiyath
Department of Speech and Hearing, School of Allied Health Sciences, Manipal University, Manipal - 576 104, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-7749.199506

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Introduction: Hearing loss is common in all age ranged population. Hearing loss leads to poor speech perception in quiet and more in noisy situation. Intact system over comes problem by masking release ability and its mechanism however impaired system fails to do. Hearing aid being common rehabilitation option, strategies and technology tries to support better speech perception in noise. Hence comparative studies of technology and strategies for the betterment of impaired population are needed. Objective of the Study: Enhancing speech perception is being the mainstay of hearing aid manufactures, Comparison of ChannelFreeTM, novel technology which claiming superior speech perception with channel hearing aids, specifically for competing signals is the objective. Materials and Methods: Thirty-three clients fitted with multi-channel and ChannelFreeTM with noise reductions (NR) On, Off condition. Comodulated and Uncomodulated masking release was the outcome measure in free field condition through audiometer. Results: Overall, ChannelFreeTM performed superior over channel hearing aids. Effect of channels, NR, and modulation type of background noise played key role. Perceptually, ChannelFreeTM was significantly preferred, especially in the first time users. Conclusion: ChannelFreeTM hearing aid strategies and NR are able to process incoming signal faster in order to retain the spectral contrast and also facilitate temporal cues from the amplified speech in noise. Acclimatization period has a vital role. Updating and implementing the validated novel technologies for the hearing impaired individual is recommended.

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