An Australian version of the acceptable noise level test and its predictive value for successful hearing-aid use in an older population
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Objective: The Acceptable Noise Level (ANL), a measure of noise tolerance, has been 2 proposed as a predictor for successful hearing aid use. The aims of this study were to obtain 3 normative data, and to evaluate the clinical feasibility and predictive value of an Australian 4 version of the ANL test in an older population. 5 Design: Repeated ANL measurements were presented diotically using earphones. All 6 participants provided demographic information and hearing aid owners were asked about 7 their aid use. 8 Study sample: A total of 290 older adults were assessed; 166 participants had a hearing 9 impairment and 96 owned a hearing aid. 10 Results: The mean ANL was lower than previously reported. While age and gender had no 11 effect on ANL, a significant, but weak, correlation was found between ANL and hearing loss. 12 The test-retest reliability showed the results were clinically unreliable. In addition, the ANL 13 did not predict hours or pattern of hearing aid use. 14 Conclusions: While the Australian ANL test showed several similar characteristics to 15 previous versions of the test, low test-retest reliability raised questions about its clinical value 16 as a predictor for long-term hearing aid use.