Report an error   

Submitted: 27 June 2012 Modified: 01 July 2012
HERDIN Record #: PCHRD12062713365868

The correlation of results between pure tone audiometry and the virtual audiometer: A simulated air-conduction clinic-based audiometer.

Anne Elizabeth M. Javellana,
Ray U. Casile

See More

The virtual audiometer (VA) is a software application that simulates a pure tone audiometer by delivering tones of different frequencies and intensities by air conduction.

Objectives: To determine correlation between hearing thresholds measured by virtual and pure tone audiometry and degree of agreement in their hearing loss classification.

Methods: Analytic, cross-sectional study set in a Philippine tertiary institution. Subjects were recruited from the outpatient department in September 2005 and comprised of cooperative, clinically normal and abnormal hearing individuals. Thirty-two subjects made 64 total ears tested (n=64), giving 0.90 correlation at 0.05 level of significance (?) (p = 0.05) and 99% power. Each subject underwent pure tone and virtual audiometry, the average thresholds calculated, and degree of hearing loss categorized according to classification by the World Health Organization (WHO). Results were not revealed until both examinations were completed. Data were stratified by frequency and compared by Pearson's correlation, while Kappa statistics determined degree of agreement between
WHO grades of hearing impairment.

Results: Average age was 40.2 years, with 20-80 year range and 18.5 years standard deviation. Nine subjects were male while 23 were female (M:F ratio = 0.39). Of 64 ears, 34 were clinically normal and 30 were abnormal. Pearson's correlation demonstrated significant positive correlation between virtual and pure tone thresholds with 99% confidence at 0.05 level of significance. Kappa statistics also showed significant degrees of agreement in WHO grades by both instruments, meaning VA will probably categorize hearing loss in the same manner as pure tone audiometry.

Conclusion: A strong positive correlation exists between hearing thresholds measured by virtual and pure tone audiometry with a significant degree of agreement in hearing loss classification. This supports the possibility of using the virtual audiometer as a clinic-based, air-conduction audiometer for screening and monitoring. When used in conjunction with other examinations, valuable information on over-all integrity of the audiologic system may be ascertained.

Publication Type
Publication Sub Type
Journal Article, Original
Philippine Journal of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery
Publication Date
January-June 2008
9 - 14
LocationLocation CodeAvailable FormatAvailability
Philippine Council for Health Research and Development Library Abstract Print Format (Request Document)
Philippine Society of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Abstract Print Format
1. Martinez, N V. (). Prevention of Deafness Program in the Philippines. . Retrieved from:
2. Ventry, I M, Weinstein, B E. "The hearing handicap inventory for the elderly: a new tool" Ear Hear 3(3): 128 - 134, June 1982. Retrieved from:
3. Cummings, C W, Flint, P W, Harker, L A, Haughey, B H, Richardson, M A, Robbins, K T, Schuller, D E, Thomas, J R. "Cummings Otolaryngology: Head & Neck Surgery. Fourth Edition Review" Philadepia (PA): Mosby 4, 3374, 2005. Retrieved from:
4. "Information working group on prevention of deafness and hearing impairment " Report of the information working group on prevention of deafness and hearing impairment programme planning, Geneva, switzerland, 1991. World Health Organization, 1991.
5. Newman, C W, Sandrigde, S A. "Hearing loss is often undiscovered, but screening is easy" Cleve Clin J Med 71(3): 225 - 232, March 2004. Retrieved from:
6. Yueh, B , Shapiro, N , MacLean, C H, Shekalle, P G. "Screening and management of adult hearing loss in primary care" JAMA 289, 1976 - 198, 2003. Retrieved from:
7. Cienkowski, K M. "An evaluation of the comparative hearing test" Internet J Geriatr Gerontol 1(1): 2003. Retrieved from:
8. Stuart, A , Stenstrom, R , Tompkins, C , Vandenhoff, S . "Test-retest variability in audiometric threshold with supraaural and insert earphones among children and adults" Audiology 30(2): 82 - 90, 1991. Retrieved from:
9. "Pure-tone audiometric threshold test-retest variability in young and elderly adult" J Speech Lang Pathol Audiol 23(2): 74 - 80, June 1999. Retrieved from:

Copyright © One Window Project 2018. All rights reserved.