A diagnostic hearing evaluation is the first step in determining your hearing capability. If you have a hearing loss, it will detail the degree, type, and specifics of your particular hearing loss. The diagnostic hearing evaluation is performed by the Audiologist in a sound proof booth, using equipment called an audiometer. The diagnostic hearing evaluation involves:
1-Review of your medical history
We will review your medical history such as: medications, disease, family history, ear pain, ear surgery, tinnitus, dizziness, balance problems, and excessive noise exposure. Please bring a list of medications and supplements (include name of drug, dosage amount, frequency of which you take, and how you take it) to your appointment.
We will examine your ear canals with an otoscope. We are evaluating to ensure they are clear of wax or if there is anything abnormal that would require a referral to a physician.
Tympanometry determines how the tympanic membrane (eardrum) is moving can tell the Audiologist if there is a perforation of the eardrum or fluid behind the eardrum. The Audiologist will insert a soft probe into your ear canal and measure the movement of your eardrum. During this test, you will hear a low level humming tone and feel slight pressure.
4-Pure-Tone Air and Bone Conduction Testing
Pure-tone air conduction testing determines the quietest tones that a person can hear at different frequencies, both low and high. Bone conduction testing is similar to pure-tone air conduction testing. A different type of headphone is used during bone conduction testing in that a bone vibrator is placed on the mastoid bone (behind your ear).
The Audiologist will seat you in a sound proof booth and headphones will be placed over your ears. You will be asked to press a button or raise your hand whenever you hear a sound. After testing air-conduction hearing, we will assess bone-conduction hearing. The results help the Audiologist determine if the hearing loss is originating from the outer/middle ear or from the inner ear.
5-Speech Testing or Speech Reception Threshold (SRT) Test
A speech reception threshold (SRT) test is often used with older children and adults to confirm the results of a pure-tone test. This test determines the lowest level at which the patient can recognize words or speech stimuli.
The Audiologist will ask you to repeat a list of words. This information will tell the Audiologist how well you can correctly identify the various speech sounds presented. At Sonus Hearing Care Professionals, not only do we assess your ability to understand words in quiet, but we will also assess your ability to understand speech in noise.
6-Discuss test results
The Audiologist will discuss all the test results with you and make recommendations. If you have a hearing loss that can be treated medically, we will recommend an evaluation by an Otolarygnologist (ENT). If your hearing loss is not medically treatable we will recommend a hearing aid evaluation.