DIAGNOSTIC SERVICES

 headphones and otoscope for diagnostic hearing evaluations to identify hearing loss and other hearing disorders

At Physicians Audiology Center, we work closely with Dr. Sanjay Prasad, MD, FACS to evaluate and identify all hearing and balance related disorders. Many of our diagnostic services may require an initial visit with a physician to obtain a full medical history and a referral for appropriate diagnostic testing. Below are some of the tests that may be ordered with a brief description. For more information on these tests, or the hearing and/or balance related disorders, please visit earsite.com or metneuro.com.

Comprehensive Hearing Evaluation

If you or a family member notices that you are not hearing as well as you should, then look to Physicians Audiology Center.  Our team of doctoral level audiologists uses state of the art diagnostic tests to determine whether or not you have hearing loss. Several tests may be performed to determine the degree and type of hearing loss.  A thorough diagnostic hearing evaluation may include:

  • Otoscopy
  • Pure tone audiometry
  • Word recognition
  • Immittance (tympanometry, acoustic reflexes, acoustic reflex decay)
  • Otoacoustic Emissions
  • Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR)
  • Tinnitus assessment

Results help us determine the best treatment options for each patient. A thorough evaluation is also critical to successful hearing aid selection and fitting.  It eliminates wasteful trial and error and saves you time and inconvenience.  When your hearing loss, balance concerns and/or tinnitus can be helped by our audiology team, we’ll deliver a personalized treatment plan best suited to your needs and the best possible results. 

In some instances, we may recommend and refer you to our Neurotologist to better address your needs. Click to learn more about Metropolitan NeuroEar Group.  For an educational website on hearing and balance disorders, visit EarSite.

Contact us to schedule your thorough evaluation.  We look forward to improving your quality of life!

Comprehensive Vertigo/Dizziness Evaluations

Your Balance System

There are 3 components to balance:

  • Visual System
  • Somatosensory System, or your propiocetption
  • Vetibular System, located in your inner ears

The Vestibular system sensed movements and stabilizes gaze, senses movement and stabilizes your body, and senses gravity changes and sets muscles. 

Diagnosing Balance Disorders

The Vestibular Disorders Association states, “…there are difficulties posed by accurately diagnosing and reporting vestibular disorders, statistics estimating how common they are, how often they occur, and what social impacts they have range widely.”  Though there is a wide range of estimates, the numbers still stand as a significant impact on all ages.

Dizziness or loss of balance is the second-most common complaint heard in doctors’ offices.  Statistics from the National Institute of Health (NIH) indicate that dizziness will occur in 70% of the nation’s population at some point in their lives.  Both acute and common dizziness symptoms should never be ignored, but accurately diagnosed and treated in a timely manner.  Fortunately, according to the NIH, 90% of all dizziness can be diagnosed after a thorough evaluation. 

Evaluation and treatment varies from person to person.  Diagnosis relies heavily on a person’s history, a physical exam and laboratory tests.  At Physicians Audiology Center we are proud to offer state of the art balance testing.

Inner ear disturbances account for 85% of the causes of balance disorders and can be treated medically, surgically or through vestibular rehabilitation.   We perform a battery a tests, including a noninvasive exam called videonystagmography (VNG) to pinpoint the cause of your balance problem. Other tests performed by out audiology staff may include a hearing test, auditory brainstem response, electrocochleography, and/or vestibular evoked myogenic potentials.  Results are used to create an individual treatment plan. 

Commonly Diagnosed Vestibular Disorders

  • Benign Paroxsymal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)
  • Labyrinthitis or vestibular neuritis
  • Secondary endolympthatic hydrops
  • Superior canal dehiscence
  • Acoustic neuroma
  • Ototoxicity
  • Enlarged vestibular aqueduct
  • Mal de debarquement
  • Migraine associated vertigo
  • Autoimmure disorders
  • Allergies
  • Ménière’s disease
  • Perilympth fistula

There are other factors and variables that should be considered when evaluating dizziness.  These include neurological, vascular and cardiac history, anxiety, medications and musculo-skeletal abilities.

Electrophysiology Testing

In some cases, additional testing to evaluate hearing or balance disorders may be necessary. These additional tests may include, but are not limited to, the following electrophysiology testing:

  • Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR)
  • Electrocochleography (Ecog)
  • Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potential (VEMP)

Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR)

The ABR test is a simple procedure used to check the function of the auditory nerve. Electrodes will be placed in the ears and on the forehead. Insert earphones are worn and a series of loud clicks are heard and responses are recorded onto a computer. The patient’s task is to lie still and relax with the eyes closed.

Electrocochleography (Ecog)

The ECoG test is similar to the ABR test and measures electrical responses from the cochlea in the inner ear and the auditory nerve.

Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potential (VEMP)

The VEMP is a test used to determine if a part of the balance system responsible for linear acceleration is in tact and functioning appropriately. This test requires the patient to lie down while lifting his/her head slightly off the table during the presentation of a loud clicking sound. 

Multidisciplinary Approach

In some instances, we may recommend and refer you to our Neurotologist to better address your needs. Click to learn more about Metropolitan NeuroEar Group.   For an educational website on hearing and balance disorders, visit EarSite.

Contact us to schedule your thorough evaluation.  We look forward to improving your quality of life!