Guidelines of the French Society of Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (SFORL) and the French Society of Audiology (SFA) for Speech-in-Noise Testing in Adult [Pré-print]

    Año de publicación: 2021

    This document presents the fundamentals of speech audiometry in noise, general requirements for implementation and criteria for choice among the tests available in French according to the health-professional's needs. The recommendations are based on a systematic analysis of the literature carried out by a multidisciplinary group of doctors, audiologists and audioprosthetists from all over France. They are graded A, B, C or expert opinion according to decreasing level of scientific evidence. Eight tests of speech audiometry in noise can be used in France. To be complete, evaluation of hearing status requires testing understanding of speech in noise. The examination must begin with a minimum of two measurements familiarizing the subject with the test procedure. For initial diagnosis, adaptive procedures establishing the 50% speech reception threshold (SRT50) in noise are to be preferred in order to obtain a rapid and standardized measurement of perception of speech in noise. When the aim is to measure real-life speech comprehension, tests based on sentences, cocktail-party noise and free-field stimulation are to be preferred. Prosthetic gain is evaluated exclusively in free field. This is the only way to evaluate the contribution of binaurality and to measure perception in noise in an environment as close as possible to real life. In order to avoid acoustic interference in free field, at least five loudspeakers should be used, in particular for evaluating the effectiveness of directional microphones, CROS devices enabling sounds picked up in the damaged ear to be rerouted to the functional ear, or bimodal fitting (i.e., when hearing is enabled by two modalities: for example, hearing aid for one ear, cochlear implant for the other).

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