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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 31  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 72-78

Monotic and dichotic acceptable noise levels in typically developing children and adolescents

Department of Audiology and Speech Therapy, TN Medical College and BYL Nair Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Deepa Aniket Valame
Department of Audiology and Speech Therapy, TN Medical College and BYL Nair Hospital, Dr. A Nair Road, Mumbai Central, Mumbai - 400 008, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jisha.JISHA_6_17

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Introduction: Ability to tolerate noise and speech perception in noise (SPIN) are important auditory skills for adults and children, with and without hearing loss. Acceptable noise level (ANL) and SPIN are tests used for the evaluation of these processes. The present study aimed to develop normative data on ANL test (monotic and dichotic) in typically developing children and adolescents using Marathi versions of the test. Methods: Thirty typically developing Marathi-speaking children and adolescents in the age range of 8–16 years were tested using Marathi versions of ANL and SPIN tests. Results: Median scores and interquartile ranges were developed. The scores were in agreement with those obtained in adults. More than 90% of children had low ANL scores of ≤3 dB showing excellent ability to tolerate noise and none showed high ANL. The dichotic ANL was significantly lower than the monotic scores, implying the advantage offered by spatial separation of speech and noise on the ability to tolerate noise. However, the scores obtained in monotic versus dichotic conditions were not correlated. There was a negative correlation between monotic ANL scores and SPIN scores (weak correlation in the left ear and moderate correlation in the right ear). Further, the ANL scores in dichotic condition did not correlate with SPIN scores. Conclusions: Children show ANL scores similar to adults. The processes underlying ANL and SPIN tests are not completely independent in children. The study does not support the role of binaural processing at higher auditory centers in the ability to tolerate background noise in children and adolescents.

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