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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
nak

The hospital ended up sending in a referral to an audiologist (due to a skin tag by DD's ear at birth......didn't know if they would since they were so vague) and they called to set up an appointment for Wednesday. What can I expect at this appoinment?

(To see where my concern comes from feel free to read this previous thread).
 

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Hi,
You didn't say how old your dc was. Infant?
The first thing that the aud should do is a tympanogram to test for any fluid in the ears behind the eardrum. This is what is present if the eustachian tube does not function correctly. If there is fluid present there is more than likely a hearing loss but would be a temporary loss until the fluid is resolved...usually on its own but if its a chronic condition the ENT may suggest tubes. This test kind of draws a little picture. A normal result should be a line that looks like a little tent with the peak in the center of the graph.
Then next thing they may do (only if infant with good head control or older) is put your child in the sound treated room. (depending on age, with you or without you) If we are talking about an infant, they will have you be in the center of the booth with dc on your lap and instruct you not to give dc any cues on where the sound is coming from. They will play sounds over a speaker either coming from the left or the right and observe her reaction. Sometimes they use mechanical toys to elicit a reaction...make the sound light up the toy until the child learns to look for the toy whenever she hears the sound. This can give a lot of information on general hearing but will not tell you if both ears are normal or not...just one ear. If child is older, they will use headphones to isolate the ears to see if there is a heairing loss on one side or the other.

There are two other tests that they could do. These two tests do not require any sort of reaction from the child. One is otoacoustic emissions. This is a very short test and gives general info on whether the child's hearing is within normal range for the frequencies that are important for speech. This test doesn't take very long but does require the child to be quiet during it.
The 2nd test is called ABR (auditory brainstem response) This gives more specific information but requires the child to be still and quiet for longer and requires sedation for some. Neither one of these tests will be accurate if the first test (tympanogram) shows that there is fluid behind the eardrum.

Well there is my book. Hope it wasn't too much info for you. Let me know if you have other questions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wow, thanks! That was very informative! DD will be 3 days short of a month old when we go in on Wednesday.
 

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At that age they probably won't do the stuff in the sound treated room...too young. They will probably do the tympanogram to check for fluid, take a thorough history from you and if they have the means do the otoacoustic emissions test. You may want to call to ask if they want her asleep for the tests as these tests are easier done with a sleeping baby. Also I would suggest calling the audiologist and asking what she plans to do with such a young baby. That way things will go a lot smoother for all of you. I know sometimes the receptionist would make an appointment for a young-un and not let me know so I didn't know the age until the morning of. Its much easier when you know a bit before starting testing.

If you have any questions after talking to the aud or after testing let me know!
 
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