International Journal of Audiology vol:43 issue:8 pages:471-8
The influence of test duration on the precision of hearing thresholds estimated by recording multiple auditory steady-state responses (ASSRs) was investigated. ASSR thresholds at four frequencies in both ears were assessed in 10 normal-hearing and 10 hearing-impaired subjects. The precision of the estimated hearing thresholds was compared for ASSR recordings of 5, 10 and 15 min per intensity level, corresponding to total test durations of approximately 30, 55 and 70 min for hearing-impaired ears. Furthermore, an intensity step size of 10 dB was compared to a step size of 5 dB. The mean difference scores averaged over the four frequencies were 15 +/- 10, 12 +/- 9 and 11 +/- 8 dB after recordings of 5, 10 and 15 min respectively. The corresponding Pearson correlation coefficients were 0.93, 0.95 and 0.96. Increasing the length of the separate recordings increases the precision of the estimates, independent of tested frequency. A compromise between both will have to be made. With a total test duration of approximately 1 h, four hearing thresholds in both ears can be estimated with a standard error of the estimate of 8 dB.