Audiology (Hearing Problems)
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Audiologists at Boston Medical Center provide services to a wide variety of patients, ranging from newborn babies to elderly adults. The team performs a number of diagnostic tests in our state-of-the-art clinic. Testing ranges from basic hearing tests that require the patient to raise their hand in response to sounds to more advanced testing which uses computer generated signals to elicit responses in the brainstem (ABR). We also provide testing for those who are suspected of having auditory processing disorders. Audiologists are also principal providers of diagnostic testing for patients with dizziness and balance problems. Outside of the clinic, you may find audiologists in the operating room performing ABR on those children who are difficult to test or assisting surgeons during intricate surgeries by monitoring the cranial nerves.
In addition to diagnostic testing, providing information and helping patients with strategies for coping with hearing loss, audiologists also fit patients with hearing aids. We offer the latest in digital hearing aid technology and offer a variety of sizes and options. We also fit special earplugs for musicians, dentists or workers who need sound reduction or protection from noise exposure. Water resistant earmolds are also made at our clinic for those who have tubes in their ears or who are prone to swimmer's ear. Finally, we offer consultation on the use of assistive listening devices.
Moakley Building 617.638.8124
If a person has severe hearing loss, a cochlear implant may help. A cochlear implant is different from a hearing aid. A hearing aid makes sounds louder and helps someone who has some hearing loss. A cochlear implant can help a person with very little or no hearing (partial or complete deafness) be able to hear.
The department evaluates approximately 13,000 patients per year in the otolaryngology outpatient clinics and performs nearly 1,700 hospital-based surgical procedures annually. The Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery provides care for patients with problems involving the ears, sinuses, oral cavity, nose, throat, neck (ENT) including sinus conditions, allergy, sleep disorders, and snoring.
The Department of Pediatric Otolaryngology (otherwise known as Ear, Nose, and Throat, or ENT) provides care for patients with problems involving the ears, sinuses, oral cavity, airway, nose, throat, and neck including sinus conditions, neck masses, allergy, and snoring.
Conditions We Treat
The term otosclerosis is derived from the Greek words for "hard" (scler-o) and "ear" (oto). It describes a condition of abnormal bone growth around the stapes bone, one of the tiny bones of the middle ear. This leads to a fixation of the stapes bone. The stapes bone must move freely for the ear to work properly and hear well.
Tinnitus is commonly defined as hearing a sound in the absence of external sounds. Tinnitus is not a disease in itself but a common symptom, and because it involves the perception of sound or sounds, it is commonly associated with the hearing system. In fact, various parts of the hearing system, including the inner ear, are often responsible for this symptom.
Conductive hearing loss is a form of hearing impairment where the transmission of sound from the environment to the inner ear is impaired, usually from an abnormality of the external auditory canal or middle ear.
Otitis media refers to inflammation of the middle ear. When an abrupt infection occurs, the condition is called "acute otitis media." Acute otitis media occurs when a cold, allergy, and the presence of bacteria or viruses lead to the accumulation of pus and mucus behind the eardrum, blocking the Eustachian tube. This can cause earache and fever.
An autosomal recessive trait is characterized by having parents who are heterozygous carriers for mutant forms of the gene in question but are not affected by the disorder. The problem gene that would cause the disorder is suppressed by the normal gene.
A Q&A with AAO-HNS Member Expert Barry E. Hirsch, MD, Professor, Department of Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences and Disorders, and Neurological Surgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; Director, Division of Otology; and Chair, AAO-HNS Hearing Committee.
Treatments & Services
Cochlear Implant Surgery
There are several types of cochlear implants. Working with the doctor, adults and children choose the cochlear implant to best fit their needs. The team provides explanations of the different options available for internal/external components, speech processors, etc.
Children with cochlear implants are more likely to get bacterial meningitis than children without cochlear implants. In addition, some children who are candidates for cochlear implants have inner ear anatomic abnormalities that may increase their risk for meningitis.
Pediatric Through Geriatric Diagnostic Testing, Auditory Evoked Potentials, Newborn Diagnostic Testing, Vestibular Testing
Pediatric through geriatric diagnostic hearing evaluations, auditory evoked potentials, vestibular evaluation, bone-anchored and cochlear implants, and hearing aid evaluation and dispensing.
Pediatric through adult diagnostic hearing evaluations, hearing aid evaluation and dispensing, and cochlear implants.
Pediatric through adult diagnostic hearing evaluations.
Pediatric and Adult audiologic evaluations, hearing aid evaluations and dispensing, bone-anchored hearing aids, newborn diagnostic evaluations, newborn hearing screenings
Pediatric and adult audiologic evaluations, hearing aid evaluation and dispensing, cochlear implants, vestibular evaluations, auditory evoked potentials, and newborn hearing screenings.
Pediatric and Adult Audiologic Evaluations, Newborn Hearing Screenings and Diagnostic Testing, Auditory Evoked Potentials, Pediatric Diagnostic Testing.
Pediatric through adult diagnostic hearing evaluations, cochlear implants and bone-anchored hearing devices, hearing aid evaluation and dispensing, and vestibular testing.
Pediatric through adult diagnostic hearing evaluations