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  Access statistics : Table of Contents
   2017| November-December  | Volume 19 | Issue 91  
    Online since December 29, 2017

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Audiometric notch and extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift in relation to total leisure noise exposure: An exploratory analysis
Wenjia Wei, Stefanie Heinze, Doris G Gerstner, Sandra M Walser, Dorothee Twardella, Christina Reiter, Veronika Weilnhammer, Carmelo Perez-Alvarez, Thomas Steffens, Caroline E.W Herr
November-December 2017, 19(91):263-269
DOI:10.4103/nah.NAH_28_17  PMID:29319010
Background: Studies investigating leisure noise effect on extended high frequency hearing are insufficient and they have inconsistent results. The aim of this study was to investigate if extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift is related to audiometric notch, and if total leisure noise exposure is associated with extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift. Materials and Methods: A questionnaire of the Ohrkan cohort study was used to collect information on demographics and leisure time activities. Conventional and extended high-frequency audiometry was performed. We did logistic regression between extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift and audiometric notch as well as between total leisure noise exposure and extended high-frequency hearing threshold shift. Potential confounders (sex, school type, and firecrackers) were included. Results: Data from 278 participants (aged 18–23 years, 53.2% female) were analyzed. Associations between hearing threshold shift at 10, 11.2, 12.5, and 14 kHz with audiometric notch were observed with a higher prevalence of threshold shift at the four frequencies, compared to the notch. However, we found no associations between total leisure noise exposure and hearing threshold shift at any extended high frequency. Conclusion: This exploratory analysis suggests that while extended high-frequency hearing threshold shifts are not related to total leisure noise exposure, they are strongly associated with audiometric notch. This leads us to further explore the hypothesis that extended high-frequency threshold shift might be indicative of the appearance of audiometric notch at a later time point, which can be investigated in the future follow-ups of the Ohrkan cohort.
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Cardiovascular risk factors in noise-exposed workers in china: Small area study
Xiaoyuan Wu, Daya Yang, Wendong Fan, Chunyue Fan, Guifu Wu
November-December 2017, 19(91):245-253
DOI:10.4103/nah.NAH_56_16  PMID:29319008
Introduction: The aim of the present study was to evaluate whether there are changes in cardiovascular risk factors among noise-exposed workers and to explore the possible mechanisms of a long-term noise exposure leading to cardiovascular disease and the sex differences of cardiovascular risk factors in this population. Materials and Methods: Two hundred workers engaged in noise-related work, and a control group of 200 nonnoise-exposed workers hospitalized for occupational health examination were assigned into the study. All workers underwent a medical examination, electrocardiogram recording, blood pressure test, other blood tests, and audiometry. The collected blood was used to detect homocysteine (HCY), renin, angiotensin II, and other markers of cardiovascular risk factors. Results: Our study suggests that the type of work with long-term exposure to noise might pose a cardiovascular risk, as evidenced by associated increases in plasma HCY levels, incidence of type 2 diabetes, and incidence of hypertension. Discussion: Our research also reveals that among male workers, the levels of triglycerides, uric acid, HCY, renin activity, and the incidence of hypertension are higher than female, while high-density lipoprotein cholesterol is lower than female workers had. Additionally, the study emphasizes again the importance of weight control for reducing cardiovascular risk. Conclusion: Our study suggests that noise is a cardiovascular risk factor. Interventions in the work environment could be a preventable and controllable manner for reducing the incidence of cardiovascular disease.
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Cognitive function predicts listening effort performance during complex tasks in normally aging adults
Jennine Harvey, Deborah von Hapsburg, Scott Seeman
November-December 2017, 19(91):254-262
DOI:10.4103/nah.NAH_83_16  PMID:29319009
Purpose: This study examines whether cognitive function, as measured by the subtests of the Woodcock–Johnson III (WCJ-III) assessment, predicts listening-effort performance during dual tasks across the adults of varying ages. Materials and Methods: Participants were divided into two groups. Group 1 consisted of 14 listeners (number of females = 11) who were 41–61 years old [mean = 53.18; standard deviation (SD) = 5.97]. Group 2 consisted of 15 listeners (number of females = 9) who were 63–81 years old (mean = 72.07; SD = 5.11). Participants were administered the WCJ-III Memory for Words, Auditory Working Memory, Visual Matching, and Decision Speed subtests. All participants were tested in each of the following three dual-task experimental conditions, which were varying in complexity: (1) auditory word recognition + visual processing, (2) auditory working memory (word) + visual processing, and (3) auditory working memory (sentence) + visual processing in noise. Results: A repeated measures analysis of variance revealed that task complexity significantly affected the performance measures of auditory accuracy, visual accuracy, and processing speed. Linear regression revealed that the cognitive subtests of the WCJ-III test significantly predicted performance across dependent variable measures. Conclusion: Listening effort is significantly affected by task complexity, regardless of age. Performance on the WCJ-III test may predict listening effort in adults and may assist speech-language pathologist (SLPs) to understand challenges faced by participants when subjected to noise.
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Association between community noise and adiposity in patients with cardiovascular disease
Angel M Dzhambov, Penka D Gatseva, Mariya P Tokmakova, Nikolai G Zdravkov, Stefka V Vladeva, Dolina G Gencheva, Nevena G Ivanova, Krasimir I Karastanev, Emanuela V Vasileva, Aleksandar T Donchev
November-December 2017, 19(91):270-277
DOI:10.4103/nah.NAH_78_16  PMID:29319011
Introduction: This study aimed to explore the effect of community noise on body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) in patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD). Materials and Methods: A representative sample of 132 patients from three tertiary hospitals in the city of Plovdiv, Bulgaria was collected. Anthropometric measurements were linked to global noise annoyance (GNA) based on different residential noise annoyances, day–evening–night (Lden), and nighttime (Lnight) road traffic noise exposure. Noise map Lden and Lnight were determined at the living room and bedroom façades, respectively, and further corrected to indoor exposure based on the window-opening frequency and soundproofing insulation. Results and Discussion: Results showed that BMI and WC increased (non-significantly) per 5 dB. The effect of indoor noise was stronger in comparison with that of outdoor noise. For indoor Lden, the effect was more pronounced in men, those with diabetes, family history of diabetes, high noise sensitivity, using solid fuel/gas for domestic heating/cooking, and living on the first floor. As regards indoor Lnight, its effect was more pronounced in those with low socioeconomic status, hearing loss, and using solid fuel/gas for domestic heating/cooking. GNA was associated with lower BMI and WC. Conclusion: Road traffic noise was associated with an increase in adiposity in some potentially vulnerable patients with CVD.
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Using auditory steady-state responses for measuring hearing protector occlusion effect
Olivier Valentin, Frédéric Laville
November-December 2017, 19(91):278-285
DOI:10.4103/nah.NAH_13_17  PMID:29319012
Introduction: The currently available methods for measuring the occlusion effect (OE) of hearing protection devices (HPDs) have limitations. Objective microphonic measurements do not assess bone-conducted sounds directly transmitted to the cochlea. Psychophysical measurements at threshold are biased due to the low-frequency masking effects from test participants’ physiological noise and the variability of measurements based on subjective responses. An auditory steady-state responses (ASSRs) procedure is used as a technique that might overcome these limitations. Participants and Methods: Pure-tone stimuli (250 and 500 Hz), with amplitude modulated at 40 Hz, were presented to twelve adults with normal hearing through a bone vibrator at three levels in 10-dB steps. The following two conditions were assessed: the unoccluded ear canal and occluded ear canal. ASSR amplitude data as a function of the stimulation level were linearized using least-square regressions. The ASSR-based “physiological” OE was then calculated as the average difference between the two measurements. Results: A significant statistical difference was found between the average threshold-based psychophysical OE and the average ASSR-based OE. Conclusion: This study successfully ascertained that it is possible to objectively measure the OE of HPD using ASSRs collected on the same participant both with and without protectors.
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