Purpose

The purposes of this study were to (a) measure the effects of Kalman-weighted averaging methods on auditory brainstem response (ABR) threshold, latency, and amplitude; (b) translate lab findings to the clinical setting; and (c) estimate cost savings when ABRs can be obtained in nonsedated infants.

Method

ABRs were recorded in 40 adults with normal hearing during induced motor noise conditions using the Kalman-weighted averaging method implemented on a commercial system, the Vivosonic Integrity (Vivosonic Inc., Toronto, Ontario, Canada). The device was then used to test 34 infants in awake and asleep states. The advantages of the Kalman-weighted averaging method were modeled in terms of time saved for conducting an ABR evaluation.

Results

Kalman-weighted ABR threshold estimates were 6–7 dB lower than with conventional methods during induced motor noise. When used to obtain ABRs in infants who were awake, the number of sweeps required to obtain a result was significantly greater than that required for a sleeping infant but well within the range for clinical application.

Conclusions

The use of Kalman-weighted averaging provides a measurable advantage over conventional methods and may reduce costs for the pediatric audiology practice.

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