The reflexive contraction of the middle ear muscles in response to sound. This reflex is thought to exist to protect the ear from damaging sounds by reducing the amount of sound energy reaching the inner ear. Acoustic reflex measurements are performed as part of an Audiologic Assessment by presenting a loud tone to the ear.
The Acoustic Reflex Threshold (ART) is the softest sound that produces an acoustic reflex response. A normal ART is in the range of 85 to 100 decibels. Measurements of the Acoustic Reflex help to identify the existence and type of hearing loss.