Equipment used in our Child Hearing Tests

Video Otoscopy

Video Otoscopy is a visual inspection of the child’s ears which is shown on the computer screen and can be discussed with the parents and child.  This is particularly interesting for children who have had grommets fitted.

Tympanometry

Tympanometry is an examination used to test the condition of the middle ear and mobility of the eardrum (tympanic membrane) and the conduction bones by creating variations of air pressure in the ear canal.

Tympanometry is an objective test of middle-ear function. It is not a hearing teat, but rather a measure of energy transmission through the middle ear. The test should not be used to assess the sensitivity of hearing and the results of this test should be viewed, where possible in conjunction with pure tone audiometry.

Tympanometry is a valuable component of the audiometric evaluation. In evaluating hearing loss, tympanometry permits a distinction between sensorinueural and conductive hearing loss.   Tympanometry is a helpful tool in the diagnosis of otitis media by demonstrating the presence of a middle ear effusion (glue ear), the most common hearing problem in children.

Free Field Audiometry

Free field audiometry using a calibrated hand held free field audiometer means we are able to establish a reaction to sounds at varying frequencies and loudness levels using pure or warble tones.

The Parrot Plus

The Parrot Plus is a hand held, portable system that allows to conduct calibrated word tests, specifically designed for the assessment of children.   We can conduct a series of words tests and we are able to play the tests against different levels of background noise including classroom babble.  The tests we can conduct are:-

The McCormick Toy Test which uses 14 paired words which have similar vowel sounds but differing consonants, the words used are specifically chosen to be easily recognised by young children (18 months+).

The Manchester Picture Test is a comprehensive picture test that can be used with children and young adults. The Manchester Picture Test is in the format of six different word lists consisting of six words using a picture book to identify the correct word.

The AB Word List consists of 10 lists of 8 words.  Each word has been selected because they contain three phonemes constructed as consonant – vowel – consonant with 30 phonemes, 10 vowels and 20 consonants present in each list.  This is a test used for older children through to adulthood.

Computer generated sound bytes

We have a selection of sound bytes that we work with that are generated from the computer and played out of different speakers around the room.  The sounds are chosen to present a range of different frequencies, they are also a useful tool to distract the child and catch their attention.  This a great way of testing the child’s ability to establish the direction of sound.

Air and Bone Conduction Audiometry

If we are able to conduct a full audiometric hearing test we will as this will provide a true picture of the child’s hearing ability.  Our decision to conduct the full hearing test will depend on the child’s age and concentration levels.  For full details of this hearing assessment please click here.