This just in: hearing loss could be hiding in seemingly-healthy ears years before researchers detect it on standard tests. Two researchers at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine have developed what they’re calling a “validated technique” to identify ‘hidden’ hearing deficits.
What Is the Hearing Test
The new test is based on an individual’s ability to detect binaural (across-ear) changes in sound presented at levels similar to the volume of normal conversation.
How They Tested
The initial exam looked at 31 adults aged 30-67 with normal or near-normal audiograms and has sparked concern for audiologists across the world still using standard technology. Scientifically speaking, UConn’s innovation trumps others as it detects deficits in the binaural auditory processing system, which is a complex system that involves both ears and the brain in locating sounds and navigating noisy environments.
What It Means For Us
The significance of this test is imminent for the medical industry, as it allows people to start actioning preventative lifestyle changes earlier and seeking the proper treatment to stave off their condition. Constantine Trahiotis, who conducted the study, released his thoughts in UConn Today: “Our study shows that our novel binaural hearing test can help identify vulnerable populations of listeners earlier, and perhaps help determine when critical interventions are warranted.”