Performance on tests of central auditory processing by individuals exposed to high-intensity blasts

Frederick J. Gallun, Anna C. Diedesch, Lina R. Kubli, Therese C. Walden, Robert L. Folmer, S. Samantha Lewis, Daniel J. McDermott, Stephen A. Fausti, Marjorie Leek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


Thirty-six blast-exposed patients and twenty-nine non-blast-exposed control subjects were tested on a battery of behavioral and electrophysiological tests that have been shown to be sensitive to central auditory processing deficits. Abnormal performance among the blast-exposed patients was assessed with reference to normative values established as the mean performance on each test by the control subjects plus or minus two standard deviations. Blast-exposed patients performed abnormally at rates significantly above that which would occur by chance on three of the behavioral tests of central auditory processing: the Gaps-In-Noise, Masking Level Difference, and Staggered Spondaic Words tests. The proportion of blast-exposed patients performing abnormally on a speech-in-noise test (Quick Speech-In-Noise) was also significantly above that expected by chance. These results suggest that, for some patients, blast exposure may lead to difficulties with hearing in complex auditory environments, even when peripheral hearing sensitivity is near normal limits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1005-1024
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Rehabilitation Research and Development
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2012


  • Audiometric evaluation
  • Auditory dysfunction
  • Auditory processing disorder
  • Blast
  • Central auditory processing
  • Evoked potential
  • Hearing loss
  • Rehabilitation
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Veterans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation


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