Vowel enhancement effects in cochlear-implant users

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Abstract

Auditory enhancement of certain frequencies can occur through prior stimulation of surrounding frequency regions. The underlying neural mechanisms are unknown, but may involve stimulus-driven changes in cochlear gain via the medial olivocochlear complex (MOC) efferents. Cochlear implants (CIs) bypass the cochlea and stimulate the auditory nerve directly. If the MOC plays a critical role in enhancement then CI users should not exhibit this effect. Results using vowel stimuli, with and without preceding sounds designed to enhance formants, provided evidence of auditory enhancement in both normal-hearing listeners and CI users, suggesting that vowel enhancement is not mediated solely by cochlear effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Volume131
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2012

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