Services

Diagnostic Hearing Services

Fort Bend Hearing provides comprehensive preventative, diagnostic, and rehabilitation hearing services for pediatric and adult patients. Our goal is to build long-term relationships and support the ongoing needs of our patients in every step of their hearing health journey.

Comprehensive Diagnostic Hearing Evaluations for Adults

The purpose of a diagnostic hearing evaluation is to determine if a hearing loss is present, and if so, to classify the severity and type of the hearing loss. You can expect the evaluation to begin with otoscopy, where our doctors of audiology will use a lighted instrument to visually inspect the ear and ear canal.

Diagnostic hearing evaluations are typically conducted under headphones or foam inserts, where patients are asked to repeat words and respond to tonal stimuli. Acoustic immittance tests may also be performed as a part of the comprehensive test battery. This quick test does not require the patient to respond and allows the audiologists to identify any abnormalities within the middle ear system.

Comprehensive Diagnostic Hearing Evaluations for Pediatrics

An Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) test is considered the “gold standard” for identifying hearing loss in newborns and infants. This test does not require the infant to respond and can provide valuable information about the softest level they can hear. Sounds are delivered to the infant’s ears through foam insert earphones and electrodes are placed on the infant’s head to measure responses.

Hearing tests for pediatrics are quite different from hearing tests for adults because younger children may not be able to sit still or follow certain instructions yet. For older babies and children, the following hearing tests may be performed:

  • Visual reinforcement audiometry
  • Play audiometry
  • Pure tone audiometry
  • Bone conduction test
  • Acoustic Immittance
  • Cochlear Implant Candidacy Evaluations
  • Distortion-product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAE) testing

Tinnitus Evaluation

Tinnitus is not a disease or condition, but a symptom – and often the first sign of hearing loss. An initial evaluation of tinnitus involves a thorough medical history, validated self-report questionnaires, and audiometric testing to rule out any underlying causes of tinnitus.

Pulsatile tinnitus or tinnitus only heard in one ear could be caused by a more serious pathology and require a referral to a physician. Specialized tinnitus evaluations should be performed in these cases to get an accurate diagnosis.

Fort Bend Hearing offers specialized tinnitus programs, which help classify the sound heard by tinnitus patients and develop an individualized treatment plan based on specific patient needs.

Otoscopy

Through otoscopy, we can determine the condition of the ear canal and see if there is excess earwax, dryness, or obstruction. The tympanic membrane can also be checked for perforation, otitis media, retraction, etc. through otoscopy.

Immittance Testing: Tympanometry and Acoustic Reflex Testing

Immittance testing may be performed to further explore disorders that might lead to hearing loss, especially in pediatric patients. This test can measure how the tympanic membrane moves and responds to changes in ear pressure.

Tympanometry is one of the many tests that fall under immittance tests. In this type of testing, a tympanometer is used to measure the acoustic immittance in the external auditory meatus.

Acoustic reflex testing uses immittance measures to assess the neural pathway surrounding the stapedial reflex. This test is helpful in pinpointing particular types of hearing loss where patient reliability is questionable (infants, children, older adults, or with cognitive issues).

Otoacoustic Emissions Testing

Otoacoustic Emissions Testing (OAE) measures the hair cell function of the inner ear. During this test, the sound generated within the normal cochlea is measured versus the response to stimulation. OAE testing is usually recommended to screen infants and other specific demographics that cannot benefit from other hearing tests.

Ototoxic Monitoring

Did you know that commonly used medications can damage hearing? Medications with the potential to cause toxic damage to the inner ear are considered ototoxic. Hearing loss caused by ototoxic drugs can be reversible if the medication is discontinued; however, in many cases it is not safe to change medications or dosages, especially cancer medications and treatments which can be lifesaving.

The audiologists at Fort Bend Hearing can conduct hearing tests before, during, and after the administration of certain drugs or treatments to identify any changes in hearing due to ototoxic effects. This evaluation is usually performed under unique headphones, which deliver ultra-high frequency tones to the patient’s ear. Ultra-high frequencies (9,000 Hz – 20,000 Hz) are typically affected first by ototoxic medications. 

Ultra High Frequency Testing

Ultra high frequency testing is performed using the same procedure as normal air conduction audiometry. High frequency audiometry is recommended in testing hearing impairments caused by noise exposure, ototoxicity, acoustic traumas, and in the assessment of patients with tinnitus.

During ultra high frequency testing, a patient will be asked to sit in a soundproof booth or room wearing earphones that transmit specific sounds into one ear at a time. The patient will be asked to indicate when they can hear a sound, and the results will be compared with normal, age-appropriate results.

Speech-In-Noise Testing

One of the most reported concerns of patients in an audiology office is difficulty hearing in noisy environments such as a restaurant, shopping mall, or family gathering. Sometimes, even those without quantifiable hearing loss struggle to hear in noise.

Speech-in-noise testing measures a patient’s ability to hear in the presence of background noise. It is typically carried out in a sound-proof booth, where patients are asked to repeat sentences while also listening to simulated background noise through speakers in the booth. Speech-in-noise testing can be used for clinical diagnosis and measurement of the functional capacity of the hearing system.

Contact our clinic for more information or to schedule an appointment for speech-in-noise testing.

Aural Rehabilitation

Hearing loss can have a substantial negative impact on a person’s quality of life and the quality of life of their family and/or significant others. The goal of auditory rehabilitation (AR) is to reduce the impact hearing loss can have on quality of life through a combination of auditory training, communication strategies, and counseling.

At Fort Bend Hearing, auditory rehabilitation is offered to cochlear implant and hearing aid patients, whenever appropriate.

Are you ready to hear better?

Fort Bend Hearing provides comprehensive preventative, diagnostic and rehabilitation hearing services for pediatric and adult patients. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.

Tinnitus Topics

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Are you ready to hear better?

Fort Bend Hearing provides comprehensive preventative, diagnostic and rehabilitation hearing services for pediatric and adult patients. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.

Diagnostic Services in Sugar Land, Texas

At Fort Bend Hearing, we believe that if you Hear Better, you Live Better! Our team is dedicated to maintaining and preserving your hearing health through our comprehensive diagnostics and personalized hearing solutions.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment!