Nearly three of every one thousand babies are born with some form of hearing loss. Currently, as part of the Early Hearing and Detection and Intervention program, all newborns should receive a hearing screening prior to leaving the hospital. If the newborn does not pass their newborn hearing screening, he or she will need to be referred to a local audiologist to receive follow-up hearing screening.
Please be informed that while newborn hearing screenings are extremely beneficial, they are only screenings. If you baby has passed their newborn screening, but you do not feel that he or she is hearing properly, please schedule for further testing. The following measures may be used to screen your baby’s hearing:
AuditoryBrainstem Response (ABR) testing is frequently used to screen newborns for hearing problems. Electrodes are placed on the baby’s head as well as on or near each ear to measure responses to sound of the auditory neural pathway up through the brainstem. This test provides information about the level of auditory sensitivity of each ear separately. The infant will be sleeping during this test.
Otoacoustic Emissions (OAE) test uses a small probe inserted into the infant’s ear canal, which presents soft sounds. If these sounds stimulate tiny hair cells in the inner ear, a response is sent back to the probe and the response is recorded. This test provides a pass or fail status for each ear individually.
When testing middle ear function in infants and young children, audiologists often rely on either tympanometry or acoustic reflex testing.
Tympanometry can be used to detect middle ear pressure, middle ear fluid, and eardrum perforations. It measures movement of the eardrum in response to air pressure; the results are recorded on a chart called a tympanogram.
The acoustic reflex test measures involuntary muscle contractions of the middle ear in response to sound, and is used to help determine the location of the hearing problem as well as the type of hearing loss.
Call Advanced Ear, Nose & Throat at (702) 834-5886 for more information or to schedule an appointment.