Poster F57, Tuesday, March 28, 8:00 – 10:00 am, Pacific Concourse
Speech-evoked complex Auditory Brain Response (cABR) and Frequency Following Response (FFR) in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
Gabriella Musacchia1,2, Jiong Hu1, Matthew Fitzgerald2, Meiling Tong3; 1University of the Pacific, 2Stanford Medical School, 3Nanjing Maternity and Child Health Care Hospital
Abnormal development of the auditory system can have a profound effect on hearing and language outcomes. However, the incidence, severity and time course of central auditory system abnormalities (inclusive of bilirubin binding status, concurrent morbidities, etc.) in at-risk infants is not known. While the Automatic Auditory Brainstem Response (AABR), the current “gold standard” for universal hearing screening, is routinely used in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and used to assess peripheral auditory function, it is not designed to detect central auditory processing abnormalities. Potentially more useful measures are the complex ABR (cABR) and Frequency Following Response (FFR) which are similar in protocol to the AABR, but use speech stimuli that can capture more subtle aspects of central auditory system neuromaturation and injury. To determine neurological changes associated with infant health, we recorded cABRs to the speech syllable /da/ and FFRs to an /i/ syllable with a falling pitch contour at two time points in the NICU. Results showed that infants had significantly stronger onset responses of the cABR and more robust FFR encoding closer to their release date, compared to earlier in their NICU stay. Lower bilirubin binding levels were associated with more robust frequency following. The outcomes of this study, with continued data collection, may help identify the severity of covert neurodevelopmental deficits during early infancy that are amenable to early intervention.
Topic Area: LANGUAGE: Development & aging