Audiology and Hearing Aid Services
- Auditory Brainstem Response Testing
- Diagnostic Audiologic Evaluations for Adults
- Hearing Evaluations for Children
- Otoacoustic Emissions
- Acoustic Reflex Mesaurements
- Balance Assessment
- Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo
- Canalith Repositioning Procedure
- Getting Hearing Aids
- Hearing Aid Selection
Diagnostic Audiological Services
Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) Testing
An Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) is a hearing test that measures the brain’s response to sounds. If your child did not pass the newborn hearing screening at the birthing hospital, they will be scheduled for an ABR when the child is 1 month old. ABRs are often used for infants or children who cannot give verbal or behavioral responses to sounds they hear. The ABR uses small electrodes that are placed on the skin of the head and headphones that are placed in each ear. The infant must remain sleeping for the duration of the test and the child sleeping or completely quiet. An ABR test can last between 30 minutes and 1 hour and is not painful for the child.
An ABR can also be used in adults to determine auditory neural synchrony. This is beneficial in diagnosing retrocochlear (beyond the inner ear) abnormalities.
Diagnostic Audiologic Evaluations for Adults
A complete diagnostic audiologic evaluation often includes otoscopy (checking the external ear canal for wax, debris, or other foreign bodies), middle ear studies (checking for ear drum abnormalities/perforations and middle ear disorders), and hearing evaluation to evaluate hearing thresholds at different frequencies and evaluation of word understanding.
We want you to better understand how the ear works, what causes hearing loss, the symptoms and different types of hearing loss, and the ringing in the ears called tinnitus. Having a better understanding of how your ear works will make it easier for you to identify possible solutions, whether it is medically fixable or if hearing aids are the best option.
Hearing Evaluations for Children
A hearing test for a child is often not as simple as a hearing test for an adult. For this reason, audiologists are trained in specific techniques to evaluate the hearing of a child. Toys, games, and lights are used in the testing room to help obtain responses from a child to soft tones, noises, or words. The child may wear headphones or listen to the sounds in a room with speakers.
Otoacoustic emission testing allows the audiologist to understand how the outer hair cells of your inner ear are working.
Tympanometry is an examination used to test the condition of the middle ear and mobility of the eardrum (tympanic membrane) by creating variations of air pressure in the ear canal.
Acoustic reflex measurements
Acoustic reflex measurements are a painless measurement of an involuntary muscle contraction to sounds. These reflexes are important in evaluating middle ear disorders.
Vestibular Assessment and Rehabilitation
Balance Assessment/Videonystagmograph (VNG)
Some causes of dizziness or imbalance are related to the ear. Typically, a physician will request balance (vestibular) testing to confirm or rule out possible causes of your balance complaints. Tests to determine the cause or source of dizziness may include several tests including hearing tests, balance function tests, or brainstem response evaluation.
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
BPPV is the number one cause of vertigo. It occurs with changes in head or body position, lasting only seconds.This condition occurs because of changes in the balance portion of the inner ear. Calcium carbonate crystals, which the ear uses as a gravity sensor, move from the utricle into one or more of the balance canals. Although it may occur at any age, by age 70 years, 50% of all individuals will experience BPPV.
The most common ear conditions that cause BPPV are vestibular neuritis or labyrinthitis. There is no pain, such as with an earache, but you may have initially experienced sudden vertigo and nausea lasting hours. Common medical conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, migraine, and TIAs (small vessel ischemia in the brain) may also cause BPPV. Mild head trauma may also cause BPPV.
Canalith repositioning procedure (CRP)
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is the number one cause of vertigo. It occurs with changes in head or body position, lasting only seconds. This condition occurs because of changes in the balance portion of the inner ear. Calcium carbonate crystals, which the ear uses as a gravity sensor, move from the utricle into one or more of the balance canals. Although it may occur at any age, by age 70 years, 50% of all individuals will experience BPPV.
The most popular treatment for BPPV is a simple and painless repositioning maneuver called a CRP. The treatment returns the otolith debris to its originating larger space within the inner ear (utricle). Now the body can absorb the calcium carbonate crystals within a few days.
Our results treating over 2000 patients since 1996, have been very successful. We have found that 80% of patients will need one treatment, 17% will need two treatments, and only 3% will need three or more.
There are several different repositioning treatment protocols. Treatment is dependent on the specific semicircle canal is involved. We will select one that will be best for your specific condition, and any physical limitations. If you have a history of acute nausea, or motion sickness, your physician may recommend medication during your treatment for your comfort.
Getting Hearing Aids
Once you have told us your history and your personal expectations with regard to your hearing, we provide you with detailed advice on the most appropriate products and facilities to meet your requirements:
Which ear has a problem hearing?Which style of hearing aid is most suitable for you?Do you want to regulate the volume of the hearing aid yourself, or would you prefer a hearing aid that adjusts automatically to any hearing situation?Which aid best suits your hearing loss or your personal situation? A Completely-in-the Ear, In-the-Canal, In-the-Ear (ITE), or behind-the-ear aid (BTE) aid?
Hearing Aid Selection
During a hearing aid evaluation, you will meet with an audiologist who will discuss with you the different styles, colors, technologies, and benefits to wearing hearing aids. You may be shown different styles or have the opportunity to try different hearing aids in the office. Custom impressions may be taken of your ears, depending on the style of hearing aid chosen. We offer a broad range of hearing aids for every lifestyle and all configurations of hearing loss—including completely invisible, waterproof, and rechargeable hearing aids. We also have a complete line of wireless accessories that connect hearing aids wirelessly to mobile phones, TVs, MP3 players, and other audio devices.
Hearing Aid Fitting
Your fitting appointment will be for your audiologist to optimally adjust your hearing instrument. The adjustments are done with a computer based on an audiogram and your own comments. Your audiologist will teach you how to operate your hearing instrument, and how to benefit best in different environments. You will also practice inserting and removing your hearing instrument and learn how to clean and care for them.
We’ll schedule your follow-up appointment within 1 week – 2 weeks. Now you’ll wear your new hearing instrument in your regular surroundings. You may want to keep a diary to record your impressions of the sounds you hear. Based upon how well you can hear in your everyday surroundings, your audiologist may make additional adjustments to improve comfort and hearing benefit.
Once your hearing aids have been fitted to your complete satisfaction, we will provide you with detailed information on how they should be maintained. Of course, you can have your hearing aids checked by us at any time. This will ensure that the sound quality remains as good as ever, and will extend the life of your aids.
Counseling on the use and care of your hearing aids
Professional staff is available to help you with problems you may be having with your hearing aids. They can also spend time with you and discuss ways to make listening with hearing aids easier in your day-to-day life. Family members are welcome and encouraged to come with you and learn about your hearing aids.
We keep a supply of batteries for you to purchase in our office. Stop in routinely for fresh batteries. Make sure to check the batteries in your hearing devices often and make sure there is no dirt, wax or debris interfering with the batteries performance.
- Size 10 (yellow)
- Size 312 (brown)
- Size 13 (orange)
- Size 675 (blue)
Hearing Aid Repairs
Some minor hearing aid repairs can be done in the office setting in a short period of time; others will need to be sent to the manufacturer for repair. The audiologist can help determine what kind of a repair is necessary if you feel your hearing aid is not working properly. We encourage all our patients to come in for regular hearing aid check-ups and cleaning. Repairs, maintenance, cleanings, and warranties come with all brands of hearing aids. We offer in-office repairs when possible on most makes/models.
Veteran Hearing examinations
We are contracted with several Veteran’s Administration companies to perform audiological examinations with special consideration into compensation and pension claims.
Evaluation and Fitting for Musician's Ear Plugs
Musicians practice and perform in a variety of different settings. They are exposed to high levels of sound, sometimes for long periods, which may put them at risk for permanent hearing damage. Musician’s ear plugs are custom-made devices that help to limit the sound exposure from instruments, while still providing a rich musical experience for the performer or audience.
Evaluation and Fitting for Hunters’ Protective Devices (SoundGear)
Avid hunters know how important it is to be able to hearing what is going on around them while they are hunting. Hunters’ protective devices are custom fit devices that allow the hunter to hear sounds around them until a firearm is discharged. The blast of the firearm is then compressed to a non-hazardous noise level.
Industrial Hearing Services
Industrial hearing screenings
Workers in certain occupations are required to receive regular hearing tests due to the risk of hearing loss that can be caused by excessive noise in their workplace. These hearing screenings can be completed in less than 30 minutes, and comply with the standards set by OSHA.
Industrial Standard Threshold Shift (STS) Evaluations
An STS may be documented in a worker’s annual hearing screening. An STS evaluation includes a complete diagnostic audiological examination including otoscopy, tympanometry, acoustic reflex testing and diagnostic audiometric examination. Testing is also performed using the worker’s own personal hearing protection to identify if appropriate attenuation is achieved.
Custom noise protection
Impressions of your ears are made to make custom fit noise protection. Custom fit noise protectors may be easier to use and may provide a more comfortable fit while attenuating hazardous noise levels.