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Hearing Loss Symptoms & Diagnosis

Symptoms

Symptoms may include:

  • Decreased ability to hear any of the following:
    • Higher pitched sounds
    • Lower pitched sounds
    • All sounds
    • Speech when there is background noise
  • Dizziness
  • Ringing sounds in the ears
  • Problems with balance
  • In children, hearing loss may cause difficulty learning to speak.

Diagnosis

The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history, and perform a physical exam. Tests may include:

  • Weber test—a tuning fork is sounded and placed on your forehead or teeth. This can help distinguish conductive from sensorineural hearing loss.
  • Rinne test—a tuning fork is sounded and placed in front and then behind of the ear. This can help distinguish conductive from sensorineural hearing loss.
  • Audiometric tests—these involve listening to tones in a soundproof room, and reporting whether or not you hear the tones.
  • Tympanometry—this test measures the pressure in the middle ear and examines the middle ear's response to pressure waves.
  • CT or MRI scan of the head —a type of imaging study that uses a computer to make pictures of the inside of the head. This may be done to check for a tumor or bone injury.
  • Brain stem auditory evoked responses—in this test, electrodes are attached to the scalp and used to measure the electrical response of the brain to sound.
  • Electrocochleography—this tests the cochlea and the auditory nerve.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2020 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

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