Lend us your ears: Idaho State University researchers conducting hearing study

Idaho State University researchers in Meridian and Pocatello are recruiting infants, children and adults to participate in a study to develop new ways to assess middle-ear function.

Gabriel BargenResearchers are seeking participants in the following age groups: 6 months to 5 years, 10-15, 20-30, 45-55 and 65-75.

Participants should be in good health without a history of middle-ear surgery or chronic middle-ear disease and will receive $10.

All that’s required is an hour-long visit to hearing labs on the Meridian or Pocatello campus for a hearing test and evaluation.

Some participants may be asked to return for follow-up testing, say organizers.

The study is funded by a three-year, $426,000 grant from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, a division of the National Institutes of Health.

Researchers Chris Sanford, Gabriel Bargen and Jeff Brockett are exploring how age-related changes in the middle ear can influence the latest tests of middle-ear function.

“Because the middle ear plays a vital role in how we hear by moving sound into the inner ear, it is important to know how this transfer of sound is changed as we age or as a result of illness or injury,” said Sanford, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.

He notes that some middle-ear disorders left untreated can lead to hearing loss.

For questions or to schedule an appointment, email isuaudlab@isu.edu or call 208-373-1722 in Meridian and 208-282-3072 in Pocatello.