Examples of Diagnostic Tests Used for Audiologic Testing in Lancaster, PA

The majority of patients referred to specialists for Audiologic testing in Lancaster, PA are there because they are experiencing hearing loss, dizziness, or balance issues. The specialists who perform these tests are either otolaryngologists, also commonly known as ear-nose-throat doctors, or audiologists, who focus specifically on hearing.

When hearing issues are diagnosed a basic evaluation is usually the first audiologic test patients undergo. This will likely consist of air and bone conduction testing, word identification, an analysis of tympanometry, and reflex testing. If the doctor determines that the patient is suffering from hearing loss, more comprehensive testing is used to determine the extent of it. The exam focuses on the middle and outer ear. All together this basic testing typically takes about half an hour, and the procedures are painless.

Patients suffering from tinnitus, a condition which causes persistent ringing in the ears, may be asked to undergo an otoacoustic emissions (OAE) test. This test focuses on the inner ear structures. During an OAE test the nerves of the ear are stimulated by sound sent through a small earplug. This response is then measured, and the results can help the audiologist determine how well the nerves are functioning.

More comprehensive audiologic testing in Lancaster, PA often include auditory brainstem response (ABR) testing. ABR testing is a computerized test that measures a patient’s brain waves. It can help to narrow down what pitches the patient is having difficulty with. It is sometimes used in conjunction with an auditory steady state response (ASSR) test. The results of these tests can rule out or confirm nerve lesions and disorders such as acoustic neuroma. They require the use of electrodes to measure brain response and often take one to two hours to complete.

In cases where auditory processing disorder is a possible cause both standard and more comprehensive testing of the auditory nervous system will be necessary. The initial testing typically takes about an hour and includes both basic audiologic testing and a review of the patient’s history. Once a patient has undergone audiologic testing his or her audiologist can begin to come up with a treatment plan. This often includes being fit for hearing aids. Specialists such as those at Lancaster ENT can help their patients through each step of this process and ensure that they find the hearing solutions they need.

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