Hearing Tests

Meet Our Audiologists

Our audiologists specialize in hearing aid services, pure tone testing, pediatric hearing tests, industrial hearing conservation, custom ear protection, hearing loss testing, pure tone audiometric and speech testing and other tests. Services and tests are listed in detail below.

Pediatric Hearing Testing

There are two tests conducted at the Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest to determine a child's hearing capabilities. The first, visual reinforcement audiometry test (VRA), is best suited for children ages 5 months to 2½ years. It uses tones or sounds played from speakers placed around the child to evaluate hearing levels. During VRA, the child sits in a sound-treated room between two speakers from which certain sounds are presented. When a tone, speech or music is played and the child responds through an eye-shift or head-turn, they are rewarded with an interesting visual display, such as an animated toy. Using earphones, an audiologist can also test each ear separately through VRA.

The second test, conditioned play audiometry, is best suited for children ages 2½ to 4 years of age. During conditioned play audiometry, the child will be shown how to perform a repetitive play task each time they hear a sound. The test can measure a child's ability to discriminate between different sound intensities, recognize pitches, or distinguish speech from background noise. An Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest audiologist can evaluate whether either pediatric hearing test may be appropriate for a child.

Pure Tone Audiometric and Speech Testing

During audiometric testing, an Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest audiologist will play pure tones at different degrees of loudness through headphones to determine the patient's hearing sensitivity. A speech discrimination test will determine if the patient's ability to understand speech is impaired. These tests ask the patient to repeat known, two-syllable words at a known audible level.

Audiotory Brainstem Response (ABR) Testing

ABR testing detects nerve impulses that start in the inner ear and are then transmitted to the brain. Clicks are delivered to the ear through a small ear piece. Electrodes applied to the scalp to detect these impulses. As the test is noninvasive it is safe and suitable for patients (such as very young children) who may not be able to understand or cooperate with traditional testing methods.

Electronystagmography (ENG) Testing

Electronystagmography (ENG) testing checks how well the eyes, inner ears and brain keep a patient's balance and position and is performed to determine whether there is damage in any of these areas that may be causing dizziness, vertigo or loss of balance. The ENG test measures various eye movements, such as your eyes' reactions to moving images, that may assess central nervous system and inner ear function. For any problems with balance, dizziness or vertigo, consult an Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest audiologist.

Electrocochleography (ECOG) Testing

Electrocochleography (ECOG) testing evaluates the health of the cochlea, the organ of hearing in the inner ear. The ECOG test measures electric signals generated in the inner ear in response to sounds and can determine if the inner ear contains high amounts of fluids, which can lead to hearing loss, dizziness or tinnitus. Such symptoms may also be indicative of Meniere's disease. The ECOG test is painless and uses electrodes placed in the ear canals to determine the inner ear's response to a series of clicks. For any problems with hearing loss, dizziness or tinnitus, consult an Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest audiologist.

Hearing Aids

Nearly one in ten Americans have impaired hearing. Medical devices such as hearing aids can substantially reduce hearing loss in the vast majority of patients. Our audiologists specialize in testing hearing loss, and prescribing the correct hearing aid for each patient's hearing loss needs. Services are listed in detail below.

Hearing aid evaluations

If hearing loss is present, first see an otolaryngologist. The problem may be resolved with proper medication or surgery. If the hearing loss cannot be corrected through these measures, all three clinic locations have an audiologist onsite to assess hearing loss and determine if a hearing aid will resolve the problem.

Real-ear hearing aid testing

Real-ear hearing aid testing uses a tube which is placed in the ear, and then it emits a sound with and without the hearing aid in place. The audiologist adjusts the hearing aid to best hear the sound that the tube emits.

Most major hearing aid brands

Phonak, Siemens, GN Resound, Unitron, Oticon, Starkey, and Widex. These brands have several styles of hearing aids, such as smaller in the ear hearing aids or larger behind the ear hearing aids, analog or digitally programmable hearing aids are also available. Ask your audiologist for more details.

Digitally programmable hearing aids

This new technology of digitally programmable hearing aids analyze incoming sound, change it into digital sound, then finally into analog sound. Users of digitally programmable hearing aids say they hear less distortion from normal analog-style hearing aids and users talk of a more comfortable fit in the ear. Discuss these facts further with your audiologist.

Hearing aid repair (all models)

Hearing aid parts can wear from high temperature, moisture, and earwax. Our audiologists can make adjustments or repairs to all makes and models of hearing aids.

Hearing aid batteries

There are several brands of hearing aid batteries. Rayovac and Duracell batteries have proven to last long with low interference. Speak with your audiologist to determine the best battery for you.

Assistive hearing devices

Assistive hearing devices are any kind of hearing device that can be used with or without a hearing aid to help amplify the sound from one source. There are several kinds of assistive hearing devices. The personal frequency modulation system uses a frequency given by the FCC to transmit a signal from a microphone held by the speaker to a headset worn by the listener. The headset can be set to a hearable volume. On the other hand, an infrared system can be plugged into any wall socket. The receiver then transmits the sound from the speaker of a TV, theater, and/or entertainment system into infrared light which is then transmitted to the listener’s headset. The listener has the power to turn the volume up or down without disturbing the rest of the audience. There are many other kinds of assistive hearing devices. Speak with an audiologist for other options.

Money-back 30-day hearing aid trials

There is a 30-day money-back trial period with the hearing aids. If the hearing aids don’t seem to offer any benefit to hearing abilities, the hearing aids can be returned for a full refund.

Annual hearing aid service plans

In accordance with your insurance coverage, Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest can help create an annual hearing aid service plan that best fits your needs.

Payment plans

Speak with us for more information.

 

Hearing Conservation and Protection

Our audiologists specialize in industrial hearing conservation, as well as custom ear protection designed for a variety of patient needs.

Industrial Hearing Conservation

Audiologists at the Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest advocate preventive hearing loss programs and work with many companies to develop industrial hearing loss prevention programs.

Custom Ear Protection

The Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic of the Northwest specializes in developing custom ear molds for a variety of purposes, including hearing aid molds and models for sleep, noise reduction and swimming. Custom ear pieces are mainly used for reducing noise, but may also be used to help accentuate certain sounds or tones and can be made to fit cell phones or MP3 players.

The clinic also offers hearing protection designed especially for musicians. Musician's plugs decrease sound levels equally at all frequencies, so music reaches the ear at safer levels, but still sounds accurate.