Background: Difficulty in following and understanding conversation in different daily life situations is a common complaint among persons with hearing loss. To the best of our knowledge, there is currently no published validated Norwegian questionnaire available that allows for a self-assessment of unaided communication ability in a population with hearing loss. Purpose: The aims of the present study were to investigate a questionnaire for the self-assessment of communication ability, examine the psychometric properties of this questionnaire, and explore how demographic variables such as degree of hearing loss, age, and sex influence response patterns. Research Design: A questionnaire based on the subscales of the Norwegian translation of the Abbreviated Profile of Hearing Aid Benefit was applied to a group of hearing aid users and normal-hearing controls. Study Sample: A total of 108 patients with bilateral hearing loss, and 101 controls with self-reported normal hearing. Data Collection and Analysis: The psychometric properties were evaluated. Associations and differences between outcome scores and descriptive variables were examined. A regression analysis was performed to investigate whether descriptive variables could predict outcome. Results: The measures of reliability suggest that the questionnaire has satisfactory psychometric properties, with the outcome of the questionnaire correlating to hearing loss severity, thus indicating that the concurrent validity of the questionnaire is good. Conclusions: The findings indicate that the proposed questionnaire is a valid measure of self-assessed communication ability in both quiet and adverse listening conditions in participants with and without hearing loss.
Subject classification (UKÄ)