Audiology Tests

Comprehensive Hearing Test or Audiometry

Comprehensive hearing testing, also known as audiometric testing, is performed to determine a person's hearing sensitivity and to determine the type and degree of any loss. The test is also used to monitor changes in hearing acuity. The test checks each ear for its ability to hear certain loudness of sounds and certain tones or pitches of sound.

A hearing test may be requested if you suspect hearing loss. A doctor may refer you for a hearing test if you have symptoms of dizziness, unsteadiness or noises in the ear (tinnitus). Certain medications can cause hearing loss, so audiologists may monitor a patient's hearing acuity over time as they take these medications to note any possible changes in hearing.

The appointment takes approximately ½ hour and is performed in a sound booth. The patient will sit in a sound-protected room and listen for tones and words through earphones. Other tests that may be performed at this exam include:

  • Impedance testing
  • Otoacoustic emissions testing
  • Air/bone conduction
  • Speech reception and word recognition tests
  • Tympanometry to provide information regarding middle ear status

Beaumont Audiology is prepared to serve all populations, including difficult-to-test populations, those who are cognitively impaired, have suffered closed head injury and those with dementia.

The audiologist will discuss test results and recommendations with the patient at the time of the appointment.

Once the nature of hearing loss is understood, you may need a medical evaluation by an ear, nose and throat physician or you may decide to purchase hearing aids. The decision to use a hearing aid is up to you.

Vestibular Balance Disorders

Beaumont audiologists work with neurologists and other specialists to diagnose and treat balance disorders.

Electronystagmography (ENG)

The ENG is used to help diagnose peripheral vestibular disorders or problems located within the central nervous system that cause dizziness or imbalance.

Brainstem Auditory Evoked Responses (BAER)

The BAER test is a safe and effective way to collect valuable information to help isolate hearing and other neurologically related problems. During the test, clicking noises stimulate hearing nerves that run between the ear and the brain. Electrodes are attached to the forehead and earlobes to recover tiny changes in brain waves from these sounds. Because the response to the BAER is involuntary, this test may be used to check hearing in those who cannot respond or cooperate, such as babies or young children. Some children are sedated for this test, as it is very important for them to lie still.

The results of the BAER may help to determine hearing loss, a tumor or neurological delays, such as multiple sclerosis and other neural anomalies. BAER can also be called auditory brainstem response (ABR) and auditory brainstem evoked potential (ABEP).