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Rotterdam, Netherlands

Adi-Bensaid L.,Ono Academic College | Adi-Bensaid L.,Speech and Hearing Center | Ben-David A.,Hadassah College | Ben-David A.,Tel Aviv University | And 2 more authors.
Infant Behavior and Development | Year: 2015

The goal of the study was to examine whether the 'noun-bias' phenomenon, which exists in the lexicon of Hebrew-speaking children, also exists in Hebrew child-directed speech (CDS) as well as in Hebrew adult-directed speech (ADS). In addition, we aimed to describe the use of the different classes of content words in the speech of Hebrew-speaking parents to their children at different ages compared to the speech of parents to adults (ADS). Thirty infants (age range 8:5-33 months) were divided into three stages according to age: pre-lexical, single-word, and early grammar. The ADS corpus included 18 Hebrew-speaking parents of children at the same three stages of language development as in the CDS corpus. The CDS corpus was collected from parent-child dyads during naturalistic activities at home: mealtime, bathing, and play. The ADS corpus was collected from parent-experimenter interactions including the parent watching a video and then being interviewed by the experimenter. 200 utterances of each sample were transcribed, coded for types and tokens and analyzed quantitatively and qualitatively. Results show that in CDS, when speaking to infants of all ages, parents' use of types and tokens of verbs and nouns was similar and significantly higher than their use of adjectives or adverbs. In ADS, however, verbs were the main lexical category used by Hebrew-speaking parents in both types and tokens. It seems that both the properties of the input language (e.g. the pro-drop parameter) and the interactional styles of the caregivers are important factors that may influence the high presence of verbs in Hebrew-speaking parents' ADS and CDS. The negative correlation between the widespread use of verbs in the speech of parents to their infants and the 'noun-bias' phenomenon in the Hebrew-child lexicon will be discussed in detail. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. Source

Karawani H.,Haifa University | Karawani H.,Speech and Hearing Center | Attias J.,Haifa University | Attias J.,Institute for Audiology and Clinical Neurophysiology | And 3 more authors.
Clinical Otolaryngology | Year: 2015

Objectives: Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) may result from occupational noise exposures and is considered as an 'Occupational Disease'; therefore, it is compensable. To verify the existence and severity of the work-related hearing loss, there is a need of an objective, reliable auditory measure in cases of arbitration of financial disputes to resolve any medicolegal aspects. The objective of the study was to compare between the ABR and ASSR for predicting the behavioural threshold in subjects with normal hearing or NIHL. Design: The study included 82 subjects regularly exposed to high levels of occupational noise, with normal hearing and NIHL. ABR to clicks and to tone bursts were recorded followed by multiple-frequency ASSR. Physiological and behavioural thresholds were compared for specific frequencies (1000, 2000 Hz) and average of high-frequency range (2000 and 4000 Hz). In addition, Pearson correlations and the specificity and sensitivity of each measure were also calculated using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. Results: In the NIHL group, there was a significantly smaller difference between the behavioural threshold and click-ABR than the ASSR in high-frequency range. Pearson correlations were significantly higher for click-ABR. Analysis of specific frequencies yielded a smaller difference between behavioural and ASSR than tone-burst-ABR thresholds, with a slightly better correlation for ASSR than tone-burst-ABR. Higher sensitivity but lower specificity was suggested for ASSR than ABR. Conclusions: ASSR is associated with high-frequency specificity, shorter test sessions and good correlations with behavioural thresholds, making it a potentially better measure than ABR for predicting audiograms in subjects with NIHL. These findings have diagnostic implications, especially in cases of workers' compensation when subjects may be uncooperative. © 2015 John Wiley and Sons Ltd. Source

Henkin Y.,Tel Aviv University | Henkin Y.,Speech and Hearing Center | Feinholz M.,Tel Aviv University | Arie M.,Tel Aviv University | Bar-Haim Y.,Tel Aviv University
Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology | Year: 2010

Evidence suggests that children with selective mutism (SM) display significant aberrations in auditory efferent activity at the brainstem level that may underlie inefficient auditory processing during vocalization, and lead to speech avoidance. The objective of the present study was to explore auditory filtering processes at the cortical level in children with SM. The classic paired-click paradigm was utilized to assess suppression of the P50 event-related potential to the second, of two sequentially-presented clicks, in ten children with SM and 10 control children. A significant suppression of P50 to the second click was evident in the SM group, whereas no suppression effect was observed in controls. Suppression was evident in 90% of the SM group and in 40% of controls, whereas augmentation was found in 10% and 60%, respectively, yielding a significant association between group and suppression of P50. P50 to the first click was comparable in children with SM and controls. The adult-like, mature P50 suppression effect exhibited by children with SM may reflect a cortical mechanism of compensatory inhibition of irrelevant repetitive information that was not properly suppressed at lower levels of their auditory system. The current data extends our previous findings suggesting that differential auditory processing may be involved in speech selectivity in SM. © 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Source

Amir O.,Tel Aviv University | Primov-Fever A.,Sheba Medical Center | Kushnir T.,Tel Aviv University | Kandelshine-Waldman O.,Tel Aviv University | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Voice | Year: 2013

Hypothesis: Acting students require diverse, high-quality, and high-intensity vocal performance from early stages of their training. Demanding vocal activities, before developing the appropriate vocal skills, put them in high risk for developing vocal problems. Study Design: A retrospective analysis of voice characteristics of first-year acting students using several voice evaluation tools. Methods: A total of 79 first-year acting students (55 women and 24 men) were assigned into two study groups: laryngeal findings (LFs) and no laryngeal findings, based on stroboscopic findings. Their voice characteristics were evaluated using acoustic analysis, aerodynamic examination, perceptual scales, and self-report questionnaires. Results obtained from each set of measures were examined using a factor analysis approach. Results: Significant differences between the two groups were found for a single fundamental frequency (F0)-Regularity factor; a single Grade, Roughness, Breathiness, Asthenia, Strain perceptual factor; and the three self-evaluation factors. Gender differences were found for two acoustic analysis factors, which were based on F0 and its derivatives, namely an aerodynamic factor that represents expiratory volume measurements and a single self-evaluation factor that represents the tendency to seek therapy. Conclusions: Approximately 50% of the first-year acting students had LFs. These students differed from their peers in the control group in a single acoustic analysis factor, as well as perceptual and self-report factors. No group differences, however, were found for the aerodynamic factors. Early laryngeal examination and voice evaluation of future professional voice users could provide a valuable individual baseline, to which later examinations could be compared, and assist in providing personally tailored treatment. © 2013 The Voice Foundation. Source

Barkai G.,Pediatric Infectious Diseases Unit | Barzilai A.,Pediatric Infectious Diseases Unit | Mendelson E.,Central Virology Laboratory | Tepperberg-Oikawa M.,Central Virology Laboratory | And 2 more authors.
Israel Medical Association Journal | Year: 2013

Background: Congenital cytomegalovirus (C-CMV) infection affects 0.4-2% of newborn infants in Israel, most of whom are asymptomatic. Of these, 10-20% will subsequently develop hearing impairment and may have benefitted from early detection by neonatal screening. Objectives: To retrospectively analyze the results of a screening program for C-CMV performed at the Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, during a 1 year period, using real-time polymerase chain reaction (rt-PCR) from umbilical cord blood. Methods: CMV DNA was detected by rt-PCR performed on infants' cord blood. C-CMV was confirmed by urine culture (Shell-vial). All confirmed cases were further investigated for C-CMV manifestations by head ultrasound, complete blood count, liver enzyme measurement, ophthalmology examination and hearing investigation. Results: During the period 1 June 2009 to 31 May 2010, 11,022 infants were born at the Sheba Medical Center, of whom 8105 (74%) were screened. Twenty-three (0.28%) were positive for CMV and 22 of them (96%) were confirmed by urine culture. Two additional infants, who had not been screened, were detected after clinical suspicion. All 24 infants were further investigated, and 3 (12.5%) had central nervous system involvement (including hearing impairment) and were offered intravenous ganciclovir for 6 weeks. Eighteen infants (82%) would not otherwise have been diagnosed. Conclusions: The relatively low incidence of C-CMV detected in our screening program probably reflects the low sensitivity of cord blood screening. Nevertheless, this screening program reliably detected a non-negligible number of infants who could benefit from early detection. Other screening methods using saliva should be investigated further. Source

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