Facutly Practice Plan

Hearing Evaluation

Adult Audiology at Washington University School of Medicine offers many different diagnostic tests. For most patients, the first test you schedule will be a basic hearing test or audiogram. Additional tests that you may require include acoustic immittance testing, auditory brainstem response testing, electrocochleography, otoacoustic immittance testing, central auditory processing evaluation and facial nerve function testing (facial ENOG).

You may be seen for testing the same day you see one of our ear, nose, and throat physicians or you may be seen only by the audiologist. A complete case history will be obtained. You will be asked questions about your hearing and auditory symptoms, as well as your general health and family history. At the beginning of almost every appointment your external ear canals will first be examined with an otoscope. An otoscope allows the audiologist to look at the external ear canals and eardrums to determine if significant wax or debris is present that might affect the accuracy of auditory testing. If significant cerumen or debris is noted in the external ear canals, it will be necessary to see one of the ear, nose, and throat physicians for ear cleaning. Examination with an otoscope also allows the audiologist to examine the size and shape of the ear canals and any abnormalities.

Diagnostic tests can be performed individually or in combination. As indicated above, the first test to be performed will usually be a basic hearing test and possibly immittance testing. In many cases, this will be the only testing required. Additional tests can be performed as needed. If hearing loss is identified, hearing aids and/or other hearing assistive devices may be recommended. Hearing protection devices and ear plugs for protection while swimming and showering may also be recommended. Evaluation and fitting of these devices is also provided by the audiologists at Washington University. Please see the appropriate sections of our web site for further information regarding these services.

To learn more about the different diagnostic procedures, please click on the specific test below.

Basic Hearing Test

Acoustic Immittance Testing

Auditory Brainstem Response Testing


Otoacoustic Emissions

Central Auditory Processing (CAP) Evaluation


Return to: Hearing Evaluation