Effectiveness of counseling-based adult group aural rehabilitation programs: a systematic review of the evidence

J Am Acad Audiol. 2005 Jul-Aug;16(7):485-93. doi: 10.3766/jaaa.16.7.8.


A systematic evidence-based review was conducted to examine the effectiveness of counseling and communication strategy-oriented group adult aural rehabilitation (AR) programs. The literature search for relevant articles focused on studies that (1) employed adults with hearing impairment; (2) used a group aural rehabilitation program that emphasized counseling and communication strategies; (3) utilized a randomized controlled trial, quasi-experimental, or non-intervention cohort design; (4) employed an outcome measure that assessed some aspect of personal adjustment, perceived hearing handicap, or hearing aid benefit and/or satisfaction; and (5) were published in a refereed journal. Twelve articles were found that met these inclusion criteria. Analysis of the 12 studies led to the following conclusion: there is reasonably good evidence that participation in an adult AR program provides short-term reduction in self-perception of hearing handicap and potentially better use of communication strategies and hearing aids. It is less clear whether this advantage over provision of hearing aids alone persists over time.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Communication*
  • Directive Counseling*
  • Group Processes*
  • Hearing Loss / psychology
  • Hearing Loss / rehabilitation*
  • Humans
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Treatment Outcome