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Cognition and hearing aids (Kestens et al., 2021)

posted on 01.02.2021, 23:12 by Katrien Kestens, Sofie Degeest, Hannah Keppler
Purpose: Hearing aids are the primary rehabilitation devices used to compensate for presbyacusis, though large intersubject variability in hearing aid benefit has been reported. This systematic review aimed to investigate how intersubject differences in cognition could influence the aided benefit for speech understanding and listening effort with bilateral digital hearing aids.
Method: Articles were selected through systematic searches in MEDLINE, Embase, Central, and reference lists. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines were followed.
Results: The initial search resulted in 1,092 unique hits, of which 16 were included. The effect of cognition on the aided benefit in terms of speech understanding and listening effort was examined in 12 and four studies, respectively. The aided speech and listening effort benefit obtained from hearing aid use in general or from a specific digital feature (i.e., microphone directionality, noise reduction, amplitude compression, and frequency compression) was associated with four cognitive functions (i.e., working memory, processing speed, selective attention, and executive functions).
Conclusions: Hearing aid users with poorer cognitive functioning derived more aided benefit in terms of speech understanding from hearing aid settings facilitating the matching process between the incoming auditory signal and representations stored in long-term memory. However, since the number of included studies was limited, this trend should be interpreted with caution.

Supplemental Material S1. The inclusion and exclusion criteria based on the Population, Intervention, Control, Outcomes, and Study Design (PICOS) strategy.

Supplemental Material S2. The translated English quality assessment.

Supplemental Material S3. The results of the statistical analyses.

Supplemental Material S4. The first investigator’s total score and overall methodological rating of all included studies.

Kestens, K., Degeest, S., & Keppler, H. (2021). The effect of cognition on the aided benefit in terms of speech understanding and listening effort obtained with digital hearing aids: A systematic review. American Journal of Audiology. https://doi.org/10.1044/2020_AJA-20-00019