Portable music players may cause short-term hearing loss: study

June 24, 2010

The increasing popularity of MP3 players has led to concern about the impact such devices may have on hearing.

According to a study abstract, researchers at Ghent University in Belgium exposed 21 individuals ages 19 to 28 to pop/rock music on an MP3 player for one hour. Participants listened for six sessions at varying volumes using two different types of headphones.

After one hour, participants' hearing was tested and temporary changes in hearing sensitivity were noted among those who listened to the MP3 player when compared to a control group.

Researchers called for additional studies to determine whether hearing could be permanently affected by MP3 player use.

The study was published in the June issue of the Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery.