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Audiology Services

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Audiology and Balance

An important part of a balance assessment at Fyzical is the audiology work-up. The vestibular system is one of the 3 main parts of the balance system and is found in the inner ear. Our doctor of audiology, or audiologist, specializes in identifying, diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the auditory and balance system.

Evaluation

Hearing

Hearing evaluations give our audiologists important information about the ear, and many balance disorders are associated with changes in hearing. A full evaluation assesses the function of the outer, middle, and inner ear.  Pure-tone testing, word-recognition abilities, bone-conduction thresholds, middle-ear functioning, and acoustic reflexes are all tested in a diagnostic hearing evaluation.

Vestibular

When and audiologist conducts vestibular testing they are using specialized equipment to evaluate how the way the inner ear, eyes, body, and brain work together. Depending on a person’s dizziness symptoms and case history, many different tests may be used. Some of these tests include:

  • Videonystagmography (VNG)

  • Video Head Impulse Test (vHIT)

  • Computerized Dynamic Posturography (CDP)

Some of these tests may be affected by over the counter or prescription medications, alcohol, caffeine, or tobacco. It is important to follow any pre-test directions you may receive.

Treatment

Hearing

There are 3 main types of hearing loss, and treatment recommendations will vary depending on the type and degree of hearing loss.

  • Sensorineural

    • Sensorineural is the most common type of hearing loss.

    • This type of hearing loss is due to damage within the inner ear or to the auditory nerve, which connects the ear to the brain.

    • Exposure to loud noises, aging, illness and certain drugs can all cause damage to the inner ear.

    • This type of damage is usually permanent and cannot be corrected through medical or surgical means.

    • Fortunately, the majority of individuals with this type of hearing loss can receive benefit from the use of a hearing aid.

  • Conductive

    • Conductive hearing loss means that something is preventing sound from going through the outer or middle ear.

    • Impacted earwax, a perforated eardrum or a malformation to the outer ear can all prevent sound waves from being properly captured by the outer ear and funneled down the ear canal.

    • Fluid within the middle ear, an ear infection and poor Eustachian tube function can all prevent the vibration of the sound wave from traveling from the eardrum through the bones in the middle ear.

    • This type of hearing loss may be temporary and is usually treated through medical or surgical means.

  • Mixed

    • Mixed hearing loss is a combination of both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.

    • To treat this type of hearing loss the conductive hearing loss is addressed first and then the sensorineural.

Vestibular

                At Fyzical, our audiologist works closely with our physical therapists to create a rehabilitation plan for Balance Therapy and Vestibular Rehabilitation.  This continuity of care and multi-disciplinary approach is a part of what makes us different.