Authors: Amaury Hazan1, Jonatan Rivilla1, Num Méndez1, Nicolas Wack1, Oscar Paytuvi1, Andrzej Zarowski1, Erwin Offeciers1, Jacques Kinsbergen1
1Jacoti BV, Vlamingstraat 4, B 8560 Wevelgem, Belgium
Background Jacoti Hearing Center is an iOS-based application that allows to perform a self-assessment of air-conduction hearing thresholds, does not require the intervention of a test supervisor, is calibrated for use with Apple EarPods, and allows testing in uncontrolled noise conditions thanks to a noise monitoring component. Previous work showed that the thresholds obtained with Hearing Center were in agreement with those obtained in an audiological booth in a clinical setting. Users test data is stored in Jacoti proprietary Earcloud™ platform that gives access to a significant amount of data points not usually available in other hearing test studies and allows for extensive analyses of historical self-testing data obtained by users.
Methods We analyze historical full audiometry (12 frequencies ranging from 0.125 to 12 kHz) self-test anonymized data originating from 16981 test sessions, for 12647 distinct ears. From the resulting 229527 thresholds tested, we perform a test-retest analysis on two data sets, resulting in 4465 (long-term, 20-90 days interval) and 42592 (short-term, 0-20 days interval) test-retest pairs.
Results The average percentage of test-retest pairs thresholds agreement within 10 dBHL is 84.99% (Normal hearing (NH) 98.71%, Mild hearing impairement (MiHI) 80.68%, Moderate hearing impairement (MoHI) 78.2%, Severe hearing impairement (SHI) 79.96%) for the short-term data set, and 80.36% (NH 98.56%, MiHI 76.38%, MoHI 74.03%, SHI 72.61%) for the long-term data set.
Conclusion The analysis supports that Jacoti Hearing Center can be seen as effective as standard air-conduction audiometry in most patients. This represents an alternative to visiting a hearing specialist, which is especially beneficial in areas where hearing care services are scarce and unaffordable, in the context of COVID-19 traveling and social distancing rules, and in the general transition to remote health platforms. The audiometric thresholds data obtained after undertaking a test can be readily used to fit Jacoti ListenApp iOS-based hearing aid, or any hearing aid that accepts an audiogram as input.