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    Clinical Research Tools for Rapid Assessment of Cochlear Health

    by  • October 3, 2014 • 2014-2015 Provost Digital Innovation Grant Winners

    Project Name: Clinical Research Tools for Rapid Assessment of Cochlear Health
    Grantee: Joshua J. Hajicek
    Discipline: Hearing Science
    Funding Cycle: 2014-2015
    Project Status: Cycle Complete
    White Paper: PDIG-White-Paper-Hajicek

    About the Project

    wavesAbstract: Individuals with normal hearing produce sounds from their ears. The ear has three main parts, the outer ear, middle ear, and inner ear. These sounds, called otoacoustic emissions (OAEs), are produced by the inner ear, which is known as the cochlea. Currently, OAEs are the best way to assess the health of the cochlea without surgery. However, current clinical OAE measurement devices crudely assess cochlear status and underutilize the information obtained.  We have developed a software platform that integrates advancements in auditory research with advancements in signal processing to maximize the clinical information available from OAE measurements.

    Our measurements are almost 5 times faster and provide a high-resolution assessment of cochlear health. Our software platform is expected to improve the application of OAEs to other research areas such as monitoring intracranial pressure after traumatic brain injuries, understanding auditory brainstem innervation, and to identify changes in hearing health, not detectable by clinical tests, thereby mitigating permanent hearing loss.