Subharmonic Distortion in Ear Canal Pressure and Intracochlear Pressure and Motion

Huang, Stanley; Dong, Wei; Olson, Elizabeth S.

When driven at sound pressure levels greater than ~110 dB stimulus pressure level, the mammalian middle ear is known to produce subharmonic distortion. In this study, we simultaneously measured subharmonics in the ear canal pressure, intracochlear pressure, and basilar membrane or round window membrane velocity, in gerbil. Our primary objective was to quantify the relationship between the subharmonics measured in the ear canal and their intracochlear counterparts. We had two primary findings: (1) The subharmonics emerged suddenly, with a substantial amplitude in the ear canal and the cochlea; (2) at the stimulus level for which subharmonics emerged, the pressure in scala vestibuli/pressure in the ear canal amplitude relationship was similar for the subharmonic and fundamental components. These findings are important for experiments and clinical conditions in which high sound pressure level stimuli are used and could lead to confounding subharmonic stimulation.


Also Published In

Journal of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology

More About This Work

Academic Units
Biomedical Engineering
Published Here
June 22, 2012