acous-, acou-, acouo-, acoustico-, acouto-, acousti-, -acousia, -acousis, -acoustical, acu-, -acusis-, -acusia

(Greek: akoustikos, to hear, hearing; to listen, listening)

acoustic center (s) (noun), acoustic centers (pl)
The central hearing area in the brain which is located in the temporal lobe of the cerebrum or head: The neurosurgeon was able to successfully perform an operation in the acoustic center of Patricia's brain.
acoustic heat engine (s) (noun), acoustic heat engines (pl)
A machine that converts heat into sound energy and then into electrical energy without the use of mechanical parts: Martin was devising an acoustic heat engine which he believed would bring much less expensive electricity to many people in his city.
acoustic homing (s) (noun), acoustic homings (pl)
A guidance system, such as a torpedo, which points directly to a sound signal: The sailors monitored the equipment for acoustic homing, listening for the sound of a ship's propeller.
acoustic hypoesthesia (s) (noun), acoustic hypoesthesias (pl)
A partial loss of hearing or a reduced sensitivity to sounds: Mr. Smith, the lawyer, found that the acoustic hypoesthesia which Shirley experienced created difficulty in the courtroom when she needed to hear everything that was said.
acoustic imaging (s) (noun), acoustic imagings (pl)
The use of sound energy to form a representation of a physical object: Ultrasound tomography on internal human organs is an example of acoustic imaging which includes microscopic pictures that have been produced with sounds.
acoustic lens (s) (noun), acoustic lenses (pl)
In ultrasonography, a lens used to focus or to diverge a sound beam which may be simulated by the electronic manipulations of signals: Acoustic lenses are made of a material by which the speed of sound differs from that in the surrounding medium and the acoustic lenses may be solid, liquid, or gas.
acoustic meatus (s) (noun), acoustic meatuses (pl)
The opening to the external or to the internal auditory canal: Dr. Green diagnosed Mike's unexplained loss of hearing as an accumulation of ear wax in his acoustic meatus.
acoustic microscope (s) (noun), acoustic microscopes (pl)
A device in which the object being studied is scanned with sound waves and its image is reconstructed with light waves: In the field of medical surgery, the development of the acoustic microscope was praised as a break through innovation for noninvasive exploratory surgery.
acoustic nerve (s) (noun), acoustic nerves (pl)
A nerve which consists of two separate parts of the eighth pair of cranial nerves connecting the inner ear with the brain and transmitting impulses concerned with hearing and balance: The acoustic nerve controls the special senses of hearing and equilibrium or balance.

The acoustic nerve consists of the cochlear nerve which carries sensory impulses from the cochlea (the snail-shaped part of the inner ear for detecting sound) to the hearing center in the brain, where the impulses are interpreted as sounds. The second part of the acoustic nerve consists of a vestibular nerve that carries sensory impulses from the semicircular canals in the inner ear to the cerebellum in the brain, which in conjunction with information from the eyes and joints, controls the balance of the body.

—Compiled from information located in
The American Medical Association Home Medical Encyclopedia;
Medical Editor, Charles B. Clayman, MD; Random House;
New York; 1989; pages 286 & 1089.
acoustic neuroma (s) (noun), acoustic neuromas (pl)
A rare, benign tumor that comes from supporting cells which surround the eighth cranial or auditory nerve: Acoustic neuroma usually exists within the internal auditory meatus which is the canal in the skull though which the nerve emerges into the inner ear.

The symptoms of acoustic neuroma can cause deafness, tinnitus (noises in the ears), loss of balance, and pain in the affected ears.

acoustic reflectometry (s) (noun) (usually no plural)
A diagnostic technique for the detection of middle ear effusion: Acoustic reflectometry measures the level of sound that is transmitted and reflected from the middle ear to a microphone that is located in a probe tip placed against the ear canal opening and diverted towards the tympanic membrane or eardrum.
acoustic scattering (s) (noun), acoustic scatterings (pl)
The distribution of sound waves in several directions caused by multiple reflections and bending diffractions: Usually acoustic scattering occurs with music that is performed in poorly designed auditoriums.
acoustic shadow (s) (noun), acoustic shadows (pl)
A space into which sounds do not enter because of the refraction of sound waves: Some acoustic shadows take place immediately behind a large object that obstructs the audible waves.
acoustic shock (noun), acoustic shocks (pl)
Damaged hearing when a user of a listening device suffers from a sudden loud noise: Monroe's hearing was seriously harmed by an acoustic shock while he was listening to music because at first it was too low, and when he turned the sound up, it jumped up much higher than he had intended for it to be.
acoustic spectrograph (s) (noun), acoustic spectrographs (pl)
A device using sound waves to study the transmissions and reflections that are characteristic of ocean thermal layers and marine organisms: The oceanographers used acoustic spectrographs to determine the various levels of the heat waves of the water and of the creatures that existed in different parts of the sea.

If you would like to take a self-scoring quiz over many of the words in this unit, then click on this Hearing Quiz link so you can see how much you know about some of these “acous-, acou-” words.

Related "hear, hearing; listen, listening" units: audio-; ausculto-.