Interactions among age, threshold, and frequency in relation to distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAE) have yet to be resolved. The effects of these variables were explored by analyzing DPOAEs in ears with thresholds not exceeding 20 dB HL. Multivariate regression analyses were performed in two different ways. For data to be included in the first analysis, audiometric threshold had to be 20 dB HL or better only at the particular frequency under study, but might exceed 20 dB HL at other half- octave frequencies. Significant main effects were found for age, threshold, and frequency. There was also an age-by-frequency interaction, but a significant age-by-threshold interaction was not observed. DPOAE amplitudes decreased as either age, frequency, or threshold increased. In the second analysis, when a more stringent inclusion criterion was applied (normal thresholds at all frequencies), the main effects for age, threshold, and frequency were not significant. The significant age-by-frequency interaction remained, whereby DPOAE amplitudes decreased as age and frequency increased, but the age-by-threshold interaction again was not significant. The magnitude of DPOAE amplitude change across age, threshold, and frequency and for the age-by-frequency interaction was small but similar for both groups of subjects. Age in association with threshold did hot account for observed changes in DPOAE amplitudes for either group. Importantly, the lack of a significant age-by-threshold interaction indicates that there may be processes intrinsic to aging alone that act on DPOAE generation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
- Acoustics and Ultrasonics