Measuring hearing aid benefit in nicaragua using cultural considerations


Purpose: Hearing aid outcome measures often do not account for cultural differences among patients. The purpose of the current study was two fold. First, outcomes on the International Outcome Inventory for Hearing Aids (IOI-HA) for individuals in rural Nicaragua were compared to reported results from other countries. Second, interviews were used to develop a culturally relevant tool that could be appended to the IOI-HA to assess hearing aid benefit for patients fitted with amplification in rural Nicaragua. Methods: The IOI-HA was administered and qualitative interviews were conducted. Interview respondents were asked about sounds that are part of their everyday lives. Using the data from the interviews, areas were identified in which success with hearing aids should be assessed. Results: Responses on the IOI-HA for adults in the current study were comparable to reported results from other countries. Interview responses from over half of participants fell into four broad areas: speech (in quiet and noise), traffic sounds, listening to music, and birds. Conclusions: Nicaraguan responses on the IOI-HA were similar to previous reports from other countries. However, it was difficult for patients to complete the questionnaire independently, supporting the need for a culturally relevant assessment tool. Based on the literature review and the responses of participants, a hearing aid benefit tool was constructed for use with amplification recipients in Nicaragua.


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Document Type





Graphic Assessment of Benefit, Hearing aid benefit, IOI-HA, Outcome measures

Publication Date


Journal Title

Clinical Archives of Communication Disorders