UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Evaluation of fetal exposure to external loud noise using a sheep model: Quantification of in-utero acoustic transmission across the human audio range

Gélat, P; David, AL; Haqhenas, SR; Henriques, J; Thibaut de Maisieres, A; White, T; Jauniaux, E; (2019) Evaluation of fetal exposure to external loud noise using a sheep model: Quantification of in-utero acoustic transmission across the human audio range. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 10.1016/j.ajog.2019.05.036. (In press). Green open access

[img]
Preview
Text
Jauniaux_Evaluation of fetal exposure to external loud noise using a sheep model_AAM.pdf - Accepted version

Download (1MB) | Preview

Abstract

BACKGROUND: There is mounting evidence that neural memory traces are formed by auditory learning in-utero and that premature newborns are particularly sensitive to the intense, sustained noises or impulses sounds associated with the use of intensive care equipment. One area of critical importance is the determination of sound level exposure in-utero associated with maternal occupation. The attenuation factors provided by the abdomen and tissue as well as the routes by which the inner ear receives stimulation need careful consideration and investigation to provide prenatal protection from external sound levels and frequencies at which harm may be caused. OBJECTIVE: To measure how sound from external sound sources is transmitted inside the womb on a fetal sheep model in 6 Hz frequency steps between 100 Hz and 20 kHz, i.e. across most of the human audio range. STUDY DESIGN: We measured acoustic transfer characteristics in-vivo in six time-mated singleton pregnant Romney ewes (gestational age 103-130 days, weight 54-74 kg). Under general anaesthesia and at hysterotomy, a calibrated hydrophone was attached to the occiput of the fetal head within the amniotic sac. Two calibrated microphones were positioned in the operating theatre, close to the head and to the body of each ewe. Initial experiments were carried out on three pregnant ewes three days after transport recovery, to inform the data acquisition protocol. This was followed by detailed data acquisition of three pregnant ewes under general anaesthesia, using external white noise signals. Voltage signals were acquired with two calibrated microphones, located near the head and the body of each ewe and with a calibrated hydrophone located in the amniotic fluid. RESULTS: Measurement of acoustic transmission through the maternal abdominal and uterine walls indicates that frequency contents above 10 kHz are transmitted into the amniotic sac, and that some frequencies are attenuated by as little as 3 dB. CONCLUSION: This study provides new data about in-utero sound transmission of external noise sources, beyond physiological noise (cardiovascular, respiratory, and intestinal sounds) which help quantity the potential for fetal physiological damage resulting from exposure to high levels of noise during pregnancy. Fine frequency acoustic attenuation characteristics are essential to inform standards and clinical recommendations on exposure of pregnant women to noise. Such transfer functions may also inform the design of filters to produce an optimal acoustic setting for maternal occupational noise exposure, use of magnetic resonance imaging during pregnancy and for neonatal incubators.

Type: Article
Title: Evaluation of fetal exposure to external loud noise using a sheep model: Quantification of in-utero acoustic transmission across the human audio range
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.ajog.2019.05.036
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2019.05.036
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Fetal auditory system, Fetal ear, Fetal sound exposure, Hearing damage, In-utero acoustics, Noise pollution, Occupational noise, Pregnancy, Prenatal sound exposure, Teratology
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci > Department of Surgical Biotechnology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL EGA Institute for Womens Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL EGA Institute for Womens Health > Maternal and Fetal Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL EGA Institute for Womens Health > Reproductive Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Mechanical Engineering
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10075679
Downloads since deposit
19Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item