A Parametric Evaluation of the Equal Energy Hypothesis

  • Donald Henderson
  • R. P. Hamernik
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 111)


A current issue of debate is whether the effects of impulse/impact noise are the same as the effects of continuous noise. Passchier-Vermeer [1] reviewed several demographic studies and reported that for equal amounts of sound energy, exposure to noises that had impulsive components produced larger amounts of hearing loss than the exposure to continuous noise. A series of laboratory studies, using an animal model of hearing loss, have shown that exposure to impulse noise of 140 dB or greater produces lesion in the cochlea that are probably mechanical in nature [2,3] and the pattern of recovery of auditory sensitivity following the exposure is often complicated; i. e., there is an initial period of recovery of sensitivity, then a reversal to higher levels of loss at 6 to 12 hours post-exposure, then a more gradual return to either a permanent hearing loss or to pre-exposure levels of auditory sensitivity [4,5].


Hearing Loss Noise Exposure Impulse Noise Auditory Sensitivity Sound Level Meter 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    W. Passchier-Vermeer, Measurement and rating of impulse noise in relation to noise-induoed hearing loss, in: Noise as a Public Health Problem, ed. G. Rossi (Proceedings of the Fourth International Congress) Milano, Italy (1983).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    R. P. Hamernik, G. Turrentine, M. Roberto, R. J. Salvi, and D. Henderson, Anatomical correlates of impulse noise-induced mechanical damage in the cochlea, Hearing Research 13:229 (1984).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    R. Hamernik, G. Turrentine and C. G. Wright, Surface morphology of the inner sulcus and related epithelial cells of the cochlea following acoustic trauma, Hearing Res. 16:143 (1984).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    G. A. Luz and J. D. Mosko, The susceptibility of the chinchilla ear to damage from impulse noise, US Army Medical Research Lab Report #921 (1971).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    D. Henderson and R. P. Hamernik, Audiometric and histological correlates of exposure to 1-msec noise impulses in the chinchilla, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 56: 1210 (1974).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    W. Burns and D. W. Robinson, Hearing and Noise in Industry (Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, London, England) (1970).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    W. Burns and D. W. Robinson, The concept of noise pollution level, National Physical Lab Aerodynamics Div., MPL Aero Report AC 38 (1969).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    C. R. C. Atherley, Noise-induced hearing loss: The energy principle for recurrent impact noise and noise exposure close to the recommended limits, Ann. Occup. Hyg. 16:183 (1973).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    W. Passchier-Vermeer, R. van den Berg and R. Leeuw, Measurement of impulse noise at workplaces: relation between oscilloscopic measurements with an ordinary precision sound level meter, Scand. Audiol. Suppl., 12:85 (1980).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    W. Taylor and P. L. Lord, Noise levels and hearing thresholds in the drop forging industry, Med. Res. Council Project Rep. Grant G972/784C, June, London (1976).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    W. D. Ward, C. W. Turner and D. A. Fabry, The total energy and equal energy principles in the chinchilla, Proceedings of Fourth International Congress in Noise as a Public Health Issue, ed. G. Rossi, 399-410 (1983).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    D. Henderson, R. P. Hamernik, C. Woodward, R. W. Sitler and R. J. Salvi, Evoked-response audibility curve of the chinchillas, J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 54:1099 (1973).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    R. J. Salvi, W. A. Ahroon, J. W. Perry, A. D. Gunnarson and D. Henderson, Comparison of psychophysical and evoked-response tuning curves in the chinchilla, Am. J. Otolaryngol, 3:408 (1982).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    E. A. Blakeslee, K. Hynson, R. P. Hamernik and D. Henderson, Asymptotic threshold shift in chinchillas exposed to impulse noise, J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 63:876 (1978).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    D. Henderson and R. P. Hamernik, Asymptotic threshold shift from impulse noise, in New Perspectives on Noise-Induced Hearing Loss, eds. R. P. Hamernik, D. Henderson and R. J. Salvi, Raven, New York (1982).Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    H. Spoendlin and J. P. Brun, Relation of structural damage to exposure time and intensity in Acoustic Trauma, Acta Otolaryng., 75:220 (1973).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    G. Richard Price, Effect of interrupting recovery on loss in cochlear microphonic sensitivity, J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 59:#3 709 (1976).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    C. Perkins, R. P. Hamernik and D. Henderson, The effect of interstimulus interval on the production of hearing loss from impulse noise, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. Suppl., 1:57, S62 (1975).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    CHABA, National Research Council Committee on Hearing, Bioacoustics and Biomechanics, “Hazardous exposure to intermittent and steady-state noise, Report of Working Group 16 (Washington, D.C.) (1965).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald Henderson
    • 1
  • R. P. Hamernik
    • 1
  1. 1.Callier Center for Communication Disorders 1966 InwoodUniversity of Texas at DallasDallasUSA

Personalised recommendations