If you suspect you may have hearing loss, it is important to seek proper testing and evaluation by an audiologist. The purpose of an audiological evaluation is to determine whether a hearing loss exists, and if so, the type and severity of your hearing impairment needs to be established.
At Archer & Mann Audiologists we use a variety of tests to evaluate your hearing which we also call the cross check principle. The process is painless, comfortable and safe.
The evaluation begins with an exam of the outer ear and eardrum.
Video otoscopy allows the examination of the ear canal and ear drum. The image (which can be printed) is displayed on a screen for you to see and can be of assistance in identifying physical abnormalities related to your hearing loss.
Tympanometry is not a hearing test and the results of this test should always be viewed in conjunction with pure tone audiometry.
Tympanometry is used to evaluate the movement of the eardrum and status of the middle ear. It is useful in determining if the middle ear has abnormal air pressure. It also assists in detecting the presence of fluid that may be related to a variety of conditions including certain ear infections or even allergies (glue ear), a perforation or dislocation of the ossicular bones in the middle ear.
There are 2 different speech tests that will be completed. One will determine how softly you are able to hear words and the other will measure how clearly you are able to understand words.
You will be seated in the sound booth and will be wearing headphones or insert earphones.
Your audiologist will ask you to repeat a list of words to determine your Speech Reception Threshold (SRT) or how soft you were able to repeat common words.
Your audiologist will measure Speech Discrimination or Word Recognition ability. The audiologist will be either saying words to you or you will be listening to a CD recording. You will be asked to repeat the words. The audiologist will be measuring your clarity or ability to understand speech.
Speech audiometry in conjunction with pure-tone audiometry can aid in determining the degree and type of hearing loss. Speech audiometry provides information regarding an individual’s speech discrimination abilities at various intensities as well as the impact that the hearing loss has on audibility and clarity.
It also provides information regarding discomfort or tolerance to speech stimuli and recognition abilities. Speech-in-noise (SIN) testing is also an important component of speech audiometry. Speech- in-noise testing is relevant as listening to speech in the presence of ambient noise is one of the most common complaints that individuals have, particularly when there is a hearing loss present. This information can be helpful in predicting success of hearing aid use.
The audiogram is a graphical display of the hearing test. The two main components that are graphed are frequency and intensity. These results are displayed for each ear. When you had your hearing tested, the audiologist was determining the softest sound you could hear at each specific frequency.
Frequency or pitch is measured in Hertz (Hz). Frequencies range from low-pitch to high-pitch and read from left to right on the audiogram. Each vertical line represents a different frequency. The ones used most often during testing are 250, 500, 1000, 2000, 4000 and 8000 Hz.
The intensity is measured in decibels (dB). The intensity relates to how loud or soft a sound is. Each horizontal line represents a different intensity level. The softest sounds are at the top of the chart and the loudest sounds at the bottom. Each mark on an individual’s hearing test would represent the softest sounds they could hear. The softest intensity tested is typically 0 dB and the loudest is 120 dB.
The right ear is graphed with either a circle or triangle when testing is performed using headphones. The left ear is graphed with an X or a square when headphones are used. These responses would all represent the air conduction results of either the right or left ear.
Another symbol used when testing is performed through the speakers or in the sound field is S. This would represent the response of at least one ear or the response of the better hearing ear.
Other symbols seen on the audiogram may depict the responses obtained during bone conduction testing. The right ear is graphed with < or [ and the left ear with > or]. These responses can help determine the type of hearing loss.
During ABR testing, electrodes are placed on the forehead and behind the ears. The test determines the brain’s response to different sounds. With this test we are able to measure the hearing sensitivity without a behavioral response from the patient. During the procedure the patient will have to remain still, so it is ideal that they sleep while they are tested. Testing can be performed under a mild sedation for which your doctor will have to write a prescription or under general anesthesia performed in theater at a nearby Hospital or Day Clinic.
I just want to say a very big thank you for all your efforts to ensure that I received both my hearing aids without any effort on my side, via GEMS. I am sure that if I had tried this on my own, it would have led to much frustration. Your kindness and support is greatly appreciated. You really do a wonderful job and it is noticed!— Addy Harris
Baie, baie dankie vir die skitterende proffessionele verslag wat jy deurgestuur het. Dankie vir die empatie, en dat jy ‘n stukkie pad saam met my gaan loop.
My filosofie was nog altyd : as ek weet wat verkeed is kan ek aangaan en it begin hanteer; dis juis jou earlike kommentaar m.b.t die agteruitgang wat getref het.
Trane het geloop maar dit gaan al heelwat beter. Daar is nog soveel om voor dankbaar te wees; en dit sluit jou empatie in.
Ons gesels weer.— Joekie