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February 1974

Custom-Made vs Stock Earmolds in Hearing Aid Evaluations

Author Affiliations

Mt. Pleasant, Mich
From the Area of Communication Disorders, Hearing Clinics, Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant, Mich.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1974;99(2):140-144. doi:10.1001/archotol.1974.00780030146016

Subject performance using custom-made and stock earmolds was evaluated by a battery of audiometric tests. Seventeen subjects with moderate to severe sensorineural hearing impairments were administered audiometric behavioral tasks in random order.

Unaided and aided data were obtained under four listening conditions utilizing three earmolds—two stock (insert and acrylic) and a custom-made coupler. Results indicated that, when subjects used a custom-made mold, they obtained better scores on all tasks, with the exception of most comfortable listening and tolerance measures. The results of this study suggest that hearing clinics should seriously consider the utilization of custom-made earmolds during hearing aid evaluations, especially when there is difficulty obtaining a good acoustic seal.

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