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Real-ear attenuation of earmuffs in normal-hearing and hearing-impaired individuals.
Suter AH; Lempert BL; Franks JR
J Acoust Soc Am 1990 May; 87(5):2114-2117
Real ear attenuation of earmuff hearing protectors in normal hearing and hearing impaired individuals was examined. Subjects consisted of 20 men between the ages of 20 and 55 years; ten had hearing threshold levels of 15 decibels or better at audiometric frequencies ranging from 500 to 8000 hertz, while the other ten had mild to moderate sensorineural hearing losses. Hearing threshold levels were obtained for the unoccluded condition followed by the occluded condition. Real ear attenuation at threshold was taken to be the hearing threshold level in the occluded minus the unoccluded conditions for each test frequency. Results indicated that hearing impaired subjects received slightly more attenuation than normal hearing subjects at all test frequencies, but differences were not statistically significant. Both groups received slightly less than ideal attenuation as represented by the manufacturer's specifications. The authors conclude that the results provide support to the observation that hearing protection devices are capable of providing as much attenuation to hearing impaired users as they do to normal hearing individuals.
NIOSH-Author; Hearing-impairment; Noise-protection; Hearing-protection; Personal-protection; Hearing-threshold; Ear-protectors; Personal-protective-equipment
Issue of Publication
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
Page last reviewed: September 11, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division