Self-fitting, over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids produce self-reported and clinical outcomes similar to those of audiologist-fitted hearing aids for adults with mild-to-moderate hearing loss, according to a study published online April 13 in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.
Karina C. De Sousa, Ph.D., from University of Pretoria in South Africa, and colleagues compared the clinical effectiveness of a self-fitting OTC hearing aid with remote support and smartphone application to a hearing aid fitted using audiologist-fitted best practices. The analysis included 64 adults with self-perceived mild-to-moderate hearing loss randomly assigned to self-fitting or audiologist-fitted hearing aids. Outcome measures were completed at baseline, at two weeks, and at six weeks following hearing aid fitting.
The researchers found that after two weeks, the self-fitting group had an initial advantage versus the audiologist-fitted group on the self-reported Abbreviated Profile of Hearing Aid Benefit and International Outcome Inventory for Hearing Aids, but not speech recognition in noise. However, at six weeks, no significant differences existed between the groups on any outcome measures.
“These findings suggest that a self-fitting OTC hearing aid may be an effective intervention option for individuals with mild-to-moderate hearing loss and produce self-perceived and clinical outcomes similar to those of an audiologist-fitted hearing aid,” the authors write.
The authors disclosed financial ties to the funder, hearX group. The funder provided the Lexie Lumen devices and software support.
Karina C. De Sousa et al, Effectiveness of an Over-the-Counter Self-fitting Hearing Aid Compared With an Audiologist-Fitted Hearing Aid, JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery (2023). DOI: 10.1001/jamaoto.2023.0376
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Self-fitting, over-the-counter hearing aids beneficial (2023, April 23)
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