High-frequency hearing risk of operators of industrial ultrasonic devices

  • J. Grzesik
  • E. Pluta
Original Papers


Sound and ultrasound emitted by industrial ultrasonic (Uls) devices exceed the known proposed hygienic limits, especially for frequencies 10–20 kHz. The consequence of this may be a negative influence of this energy on the auditory function in the high-frequency hearing range. To determine the hearing risk to Uls operators, an adequate method for testing the hearing threshold from 10-20 kHz has been developed. In order to get reference values, 189 non-exposed persons were tested. On this basis, the hearing thresholds of 55 operators for frequencies 500–20,000 Hz were evaluated. In addition to threshold elevations in the range 10–20 kHz, a decreasing number of subjects responding to stimuli at the highest audible frequencies was observed. The threshold shift at 10–20 kHz of subjects exposed to sound and ultrasound emitted by Uls-devices depends upon the physical parameters of the sound spectrum, time on the job and daily exposure time. No abnormalities were found in the hearing range 500–8000 Hz.

Key words

High-frequency hearing High-frequency audiometry Hearing loss High-frequency noise 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Grzesik
    • 1
  • E. Pluta
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Occupational Medicine in the Mining and Mettalurgical IndustrySosnowiecPoland

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