J Am Acad Audiol 2002; 13(02): 072-082
DOI: 10.1055/s-0040-1715950
American Academy of Audiology. All rights reserved. (2002) American Academy of Audiology

Diagnostic Implications of Stimulus Polarity Effects on the Auditory Brainstem Response

Cynthia G. Fowler
Christopher D. Bauch
Wayne O. Olsen
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Publication Date:
07 August 2020 (online)

The purpose of this study was to determine whether clicks presented in rarefaction or condensation modes produce more accurate diaghostic information. Subjects were 20 consecutive patients who were seen at the Mayo Clinic for unilateral acoustic neuromas. The nontumor ear served as a control to minimize intersubject variability in the latencies. A standard audio logic evaluation was followed by an auditory brainstem response (ABR) test for which the stimuli were rarefaction and condensation clicks. Responses were analyzed for the presence of waves I, III, and V; absolute latencies of waves I, III, and V; interpeak intervals I–III, III–V, and I–V; and interaurallatency difference for wave V. The results indicated that measures from both polarities were similar in this set of patients and that neither click polarity provided diagnostic advantages over the other. Recommendations are to collect ABRs to both click polarities individually to obtain the full complement of waves on which to base the diagnostic impression.