Otoacoustic Emissions, Spontaneous: Self-generated faint acoustic signals from the inner ear (COCHLEA) without external stimulation. These faint signals can be recorded in the EAR CANAL and are indications of active OUTER AUDITORY HAIR CELLS. Spontaneous otoacoustic emissions are found in all classes of land vertebrates.Cochlea: The part of the inner ear (LABYRINTH) that is concerned with hearing. It forms the anterior part of the labyrinth, as a snail-like structure that is situated almost horizontally anterior to the VESTIBULAR LABYRINTH.Acoustic Impedance Tests: Objective tests of middle ear function based on the difficulty (impedance) or ease (admittance) of sound flow through the middle ear. These include static impedance and dynamic impedance (i.e., tympanometry and impedance tests in conjunction with intra-aural muscle reflex elicitation). This term is used also for various components of impedance and admittance (e.g., compliance, conductance, reactance, resistance, susceptance).Perceptual Distortion: Lack of correspondence between the way a stimulus is commonly perceived and the way an individual perceives it under given conditions.Audiometry, Pure-Tone: Measurement of hearing based on the use of pure tones of various frequencies and intensities as auditory stimuli.Reflex, Acoustic: Intra-aural contraction of tensor tympani and stapedius in response to sound.Evoked Potentials, Auditory, Brain Stem: Electrical waves in the CEREBRAL CORTEX generated by BRAIN STEM structures in response to auditory click stimuli. These are found to be abnormal in many patients with CEREBELLOPONTINE ANGLE lesions, MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS, or other DEMYELINATING DISEASES.Ear Canal: The narrow passage way that conducts the sound collected by the EAR AURICLE to the TYMPANIC MEMBRANE.Auditory Threshold: The audibility limit of discriminating sound intensity and pitch.Hearing Tests: Part of an ear examination that measures the ability of sound to reach the brain.Audiometry, Evoked Response: A form of electrophysiologic audiometry in which an analog computer is included in the circuit to average out ongoing or spontaneous brain wave activity. A characteristic pattern of response to a sound stimulus may then become evident. Evoked response audiometry is known also as electric response audiometry.Acoustic Stimulation: Use of sound to elicit a response in the nervous system.Basilar Membrane: A basement membrane in the cochlea that supports the hair cells of the ORGAN OF CORTI, consisting keratin-like fibrils. It stretches from the SPIRAL LAMINA to the basilar crest. The movement of fluid in the cochlea, induced by sound, causes displacement of the basilar membrane and subsequent stimulation of the attached hair cells which transform the mechanical signal into neural activity.Audiometry: The testing of the acuity of the sense of hearing to determine the thresholds of the lowest intensity levels at which an individual can hear a set of tones. The frequencies between 125 and 8000 Hz are used to test air conduction thresholds and the frequencies between 250 and 4000 Hz are used to test bone conduction thresholds.Hearing Disorders: Conditions that impair the transmission of auditory impulses and information from the level of the ear to the temporal cortices, including the sensorineural pathways.Cochlear Microphonic Potentials: The electric response of the cochlear hair cells to acoustic stimulation.Hearing Loss: A general term for the complete or partial loss of the ability to hear from one or both ears.Hair Cells, Auditory, Outer: Sensory cells of organ of Corti. In mammals, they are usually arranged in three or four rows, and away from the core of spongy bone (the modiolus), lateral to the INNER AUDITORY HAIR CELLS and other supporting structures. Their cell bodies and STEREOCILIA increase in length from the cochlear base toward the apex and laterally across the rows, allowing differential responses to various frequencies of sound.Ear, Middle: The space and structures directly internal to the TYMPANIC MEMBRANE and external to the inner ear (LABYRINTH). Its major components include the AUDITORY OSSICLES and the EUSTACHIAN TUBE that connects the cavity of middle ear (tympanic cavity) to the upper part of the throat.Hearing: The ability or act of sensing and transducing ACOUSTIC STIMULATION to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. It is also called audition.Hearing Loss, Sensorineural: Hearing loss resulting from damage to the COCHLEA and the sensorineural elements which lie internally beyond the oval and round windows. These elements include the AUDITORY NERVE and its connections in the BRAINSTEM.Neonatal Screening: The identification of selected parameters in newborn infants by various tests, examinations, or other procedures. Screening may be performed by clinical or laboratory measures. A screening test is designed to sort out healthy neonates (INFANT, NEWBORN) from those not well, but the screening test is not intended as a diagnostic device, rather instead as epidemiologic.Sound Spectrography: The graphic registration of the frequency and intensity of sounds, such as speech, infant crying, and animal vocalizations.Hearing Loss, Noise-Induced: Hearing loss due to exposure to explosive loud noise or chronic exposure to sound level greater than 85 dB. The hearing loss is often in the frequency range 4000-6000 hertz.Evoked Potentials, Auditory: The electric response evoked in the CEREBRAL CORTEX by ACOUSTIC STIMULATION or stimulation of the AUDITORY PATHWAYS.Tinnitus: A nonspecific symptom of hearing disorder characterized by the sensation of buzzing, ringing, clicking, pulsations, and other noises in the ear. Objective tinnitus refers to noises generated from within the ear or adjacent structures that can be heard by other individuals. The term subjective tinnitus is used when the sound is audible only to the affected individual. Tinnitus may occur as a manifestation of COCHLEAR DISEASES; VESTIBULOCOCHLEAR NERVE DISEASES; INTRACRANIAL HYPERTENSION; CRANIOCEREBRAL TRAUMA; and other conditions.Olivary Nucleus: A part of the MEDULLA OBLONGATA situated in the olivary body. It is involved with motor control and is a major source of sensory input to the CEREBELLUM.Hearing Loss, Central: Hearing loss due to disease of the AUDITORY PATHWAYS (in the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM) which originate in the COCHLEAR NUCLEI of the PONS and then ascend bilaterally to the MIDBRAIN, the THALAMUS, and then the AUDITORY CORTEX in the TEMPORAL LOBE. Bilateral lesions of the auditory pathways are usually required to cause central hearing loss. Cortical deafness refers to loss of hearing due to bilateral auditory cortex lesions. Unilateral BRAIN STEM lesions involving the cochlear nuclei may result in unilateral hearing loss.Otoscopy: Examination of the EAR CANAL and eardrum with an OTOSCOPE.Sound: A type of non-ionizing radiation in which energy is transmitted through solid, liquid, or gas as compression waves. Sound (acoustic or sonic) radiation with frequencies above the audible range is classified as ultrasonic. Sound radiation below the audible range is classified as infrasonic.Audiology: The study of hearing and hearing impairment.Noise: Any sound which is unwanted or interferes with HEARING other sounds.Tympanic Membrane: An oval semitransparent membrane separating the external EAR CANAL from the tympanic cavity (EAR, MIDDLE). It contains three layers: the skin of the external ear canal; the core of radially and circularly arranged collagen fibers; and the MUCOSA of the middle ear.Cochlear Nerve: The cochlear part of the 8th cranial nerve (VESTIBULOCOCHLEAR NERVE). The cochlear nerve fibers originate from neurons of the SPIRAL GANGLION and project peripherally to cochlear hair cells and centrally to the cochlear nuclei (COCHLEAR NUCLEUS) of the BRAIN STEM. They mediate the sense of hearing.Tectorial Membrane: A membrane, attached to the bony SPIRAL LAMINA, overlying and coupling with the hair cells of the ORGAN OF CORTI in the inner ear. It is a glycoprotein-rich keratin-like layer containing fibrils embedded in a dense amorphous substance.Hearing Loss, Conductive: Hearing loss due to interference with the mechanical reception or amplification of sound to the COCHLEA. The interference is in the outer or middle ear involving the EAR CANAL; TYMPANIC MEMBRANE; or EAR OSSICLES.Auditory Fatigue: Loss of sensitivity to sounds as a result of auditory stimulation, manifesting as a temporary shift in auditory threshold. The temporary threshold shift, TTS, is expressed in decibels.Efferent Pathways: Nerve structures through which impulses are conducted from a nerve center toward a peripheral site. Such impulses are conducted via efferent neurons (NEURONS, EFFERENT), such as MOTOR NEURONS, autonomic neurons, and hypophyseal neurons.Vestibulocochlear Nerve Diseases: Pathological processes of the VESTIBULOCOCHLEAR NERVE, including the branches of COCHLEAR NERVE and VESTIBULAR NERVE. Common examples are VESTIBULAR NEURITIS, cochlear neuritis, and ACOUSTIC NEUROMA. Clinical signs are varying degree of HEARING LOSS; VERTIGO; and TINNITUS.LizardsPresbycusis: Gradual bilateral hearing loss associated with aging that is due to progressive degeneration of cochlear structures and central auditory pathways. Hearing loss usually begins with the high frequencies then progresses to sounds of middle and low frequencies.Chinchilla: A genus of the family Chinchillidae which consists of three species: C. brevicaudata, C. lanigera, and C. villidera. They are used extensively in biomedical research.Amplifiers, Electronic: Electronic devices that increase the magnitude of a signal's power level or current.Ear, Inner: The essential part of the hearing organ consists of two labyrinthine compartments: the bony labyrinthine and the membranous labyrinth. The bony labyrinth is a complex of three interconnecting cavities or spaces (COCHLEA; VESTIBULAR LABYRINTH; and SEMICIRCULAR CANALS) in the TEMPORAL BONE. Within the bony labyrinth lies the membranous labyrinth which is a complex of sacs and tubules (COCHLEAR DUCT; SACCULE AND UTRICLE; and SEMICIRCULAR DUCTS) forming a continuous space enclosed by EPITHELIUM and connective tissue. These spaces are filled with LABYRINTHINE FLUIDS of various compositions.Auditory Pathways: NEURAL PATHWAYS and connections within the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM, beginning at the hair cells of the ORGAN OF CORTI, continuing along the eighth cranial nerve, and terminating at the AUDITORY CORTEX.Labyrinthine Fluids: Fluids found within the osseous labyrinth (PERILYMPH) and the membranous labyrinth (ENDOLYMPH) of the inner ear. (From Gray's Anatomy, 30th American ed, p1328, 1332)Hair Cells, Auditory: Sensory cells in the organ of Corti, characterized by their apical stereocilia (hair-like projections). The inner and outer hair cells, as defined by their proximity to the core of spongy bone (the modiolus), change morphologically along the COCHLEA. Towards the cochlear apex, the length of hair cell bodies and their apical STEREOCILIA increase, allowing differential responses to various frequencies of sound.Psychoacoustics: The science pertaining to the interrelationship of psychologic phenomena and the individual's response to the physical properties of sound.Noise, Occupational: Noise present in occupational, industrial, and factory situations.Organ of Corti: The spiral EPITHELIUM containing sensory AUDITORY HAIR CELLS and supporting cells in the cochlea. Organ of Corti, situated on the BASILAR MEMBRANE and overlaid by a gelatinous TECTORIAL MEMBRANE, converts sound-induced mechanical waves to neural impulses to the brain.Cochlear Diseases: Pathological processes of the snail-like structure (COCHLEA) of the inner ear (LABYRINTH) which can involve its nervous tissue, blood vessels, or fluid (ENDOLYMPH).Hair Cells, Auditory, Inner: Auditory sensory cells of organ of Corti, usually placed in one row medially to the core of spongy bone (the modiolus). Inner hair cells are in fewer numbers than the OUTER AUDITORY HAIR CELLS, and their STEREOCILIA are approximately twice as thick as those of the outer hair cells.Round Window, Ear: Fenestra of the cochlea, an opening in the basal wall between the MIDDLE EAR and the INNER EAR, leading to the cochlea. It is closed by a secondary tympanic membrane.Hearing Loss, Unilateral: Partial or complete hearing loss in one ear.Auditory Perception: The process whereby auditory stimuli are selected, organized, and interpreted by the organism.Pressure: A type of stress exerted uniformly in all directions. Its measure is the force exerted per unit area. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 6th ed)Gerbillinae: A subfamily of the Muridae consisting of several genera including Gerbillus, Rhombomys, Tatera, Meriones, and Psammomys.Sodium Salicylate: A non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agent that is less effective than equal doses of ASPIRIN in relieving pain and reducing fever. However, individuals who are hypersensitive to ASPIRIN may tolerate sodium salicylate. In general, this salicylate produces the same adverse reactions as ASPIRIN, but there is less occult gastrointestinal bleeding. (From AMA Drug Evaluations Annual, 1992, p120)Nonlinear Dynamics: The study of systems which respond disproportionately (nonlinearly) to initial conditions or perturbing stimuli. Nonlinear systems may exhibit "chaos" which is classically characterized as sensitive dependence on initial conditions. Chaotic systems, while distinguished from more ordered periodic systems, are not random. When their behavior over time is appropriately displayed (in "phase space"), constraints are evident which are described by "strange attractors". Phase space representations of chaotic systems, or strange attractors, usually reveal fractal (FRACTALS) self-similarity across time scales. Natural, including biological, systems often display nonlinear dynamics and chaos.Hearing Loss, Bilateral: Partial hearing loss in both ears.Neurons, Efferent: Neurons which send impulses peripherally to activate muscles or secretory cells.Acoustics: The branch of physics that deals with sound and sound waves. In medicine it is often applied in procedures in speech and hearing studies. With regard to the environment, it refers to the characteristics of a room, auditorium, theatre, building, etc. that determines the audibility or fidelity of sounds in it. (From Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2d ed)Perceptual Masking: The interference of one perceptual stimulus with another causing a decrease or lessening in perceptual effectiveness.Vibration: A continuing periodic change in displacement with respect to a fixed reference. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 6th ed)Ear, External: The outer part of the hearing system of the body. It includes the shell-like EAR AURICLE which collects sound, and the EXTERNAL EAR CANAL, the TYMPANIC MEMBRANE, and the EXTERNAL EAR CARTILAGES.Persons With Hearing Impairments: Persons with any degree of loss of hearing that has an impact on their activities of daily living or that requires special assistance or intervention.Reaction Time: The time from the onset of a stimulus until a response is observed.Stria Vascularis: A layer of stratified EPITHELIUM forming the endolymphatic border of the cochlear duct at the lateral wall of the cochlea. Stria vascularis contains primarily three cell types (marginal, intermediate, and basal), and capillaries. The marginal cells directly facing the ENDOLYMPH are important in producing ion gradients and endochoclear potential.Calibration: Determination, by measurement or comparison with a standard, of the correct value of each scale reading on a meter or other measuring instrument; or determination of the settings of a control device that correspond to particular values of voltage, current, frequency or other output.Infant, Newborn: An infant during the first month after birth.Deafness: A general term for the complete loss of the ability to hear from both ears.Loudness Perception: The perceived attribute of a sound which corresponds to the physical attribute of intensity.Signal Processing, Computer-Assisted: Computer-assisted processing of electric, ultrasonic, or electronic signals to interpret function and activity.Mechanotransduction, Cellular: The process by which cells convert mechanical stimuli into a chemical response. It can occur in both cells specialized for sensing mechanical cues such as MECHANORECEPTORS, and in parenchymal cells whose primary function is not mechanosensory.Guinea Pigs: A common name used for the genus Cavia. The most common species is Cavia porcellus which is the domesticated guinea pig used for pets and biomedical research.Functional Laterality: Behavioral manifestations of cerebral dominance in which there is preferential use and superior functioning of either the left or the right side, as in the preferred use of the right hand or right foot.Spiral Ganglion: The sensory ganglion of the COCHLEAR NERVE. The cells of the spiral ganglion send fibers peripherally to the cochlear hair cells and centrally to the COCHLEAR NUCLEI of the BRAIN STEM.Ear: The hearing and equilibrium system of the body. It consists of three parts: the EXTERNAL EAR, the MIDDLE EAR, and the INNER EAR. Sound waves are transmitted through this organ where vibration is transduced to nerve signals that pass through the ACOUSTIC NERVE to the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. The inner ear also contains the vestibular organ that maintains equilibrium by transducing signals to the VESTIBULAR NERVE.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Reference Values: The range or frequency distribution of a measurement in a population (of organisms, organs or things) that has not been selected for the presence of disease or abnormality.Positron-Emission Tomography: An imaging technique using compounds labelled with short-lived positron-emitting radionuclides (such as carbon-11, nitrogen-13, oxygen-15 and fluorine-18) to measure cell metabolism. It has been useful in study of soft tissues such as CANCER; CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM; and brain. SINGLE-PHOTON EMISSION-COMPUTED TOMOGRAPHY is closely related to positron emission tomography, but uses isotopes with longer half-lives and resolution is lower.Case-Control Studies: Studies which start with the identification of persons with a disease of interest and a control (comparison, referent) group without the disease. The relationship of an attribute to the disease is examined by comparing diseased and non-diseased persons with regard to the frequency or levels of the attribute in each group.