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EBP Compendium: Summary of Systematic Review

Effectiveness of Signal Processing for the Pediatric Population: A Systematic Review of the Evidence.

Palmer, C. V., & Grimes, A. M. (2005).
Journal of the American Academy of Audiology, 16(7), 505-514.

Indicators of Review Quality:

The review addresses a clearly focused question Yes
Criteria for inclusion of studies are provided Yes
Search strategy is described in sufficient detail for replication Yes
Included studies are assessed for study quality Yes
Quality assessments are reproducible Yes

Description: This is a systematic review of randomized controlled trials, nonrandomized controlled trials, cohort, and before/after designs with or without control groups exploring the effectiveness of signal processing strategies for children using hearing aids.

Question(s) Addressed:

Is there evidence pointing to optimal signal processing for pediatric hearing aid patients?

Population: Pediatrics (not further defined)

Intervention/Assessment: Linear and wide dynamic range compression signal processing

Number of Studies Included: 8

Years Included: 1966- 2004



  • Management
    • Hearing
      • Hearing Aids - "Considering the results of this systematic review, it is reasonable to state that pediatric hearing aid candidates with mild, moderate, and moderately severe sensorineural hearing loss should be fit with amplification that employs WDRC signal processing with a low-compression threshold, moderate compression ratio, and fast attack time and provides increased compression in order to limit signals at the maximum output of the hearing aid. Evidence was found to support the need for increased audibility (13.5 dB) for low-level inputs over what is considered adequate for adults and a wider bandwidth of audibility for the pediatric population as compared to an adult population for speech understanding” (p. 513). 

Keywords: Hearing Loss, Hearing Aids

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Added to Compendium: December 2011

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