If your family complains you have the TV too loud, or you find you’re missing bits of conversation, you may be experiencing a hearing loss. In the Audiology Clinics at the University of Michigan Health System, we evaluate everyone with hearing issues, from newborns through seniors. We also provide comprehensive hearing testing, diagnosis and treatment, often in conjunction with our Department's otolaryngologists (ear, nose and throat physicians).
Each year we see approximately 18,000 patients, fit more than 1,000 hearing aids and provide nerve monitoring for nearly 500 surgeries in the operating room.
We provide comprehensive hearing loss services, including:
- Hearing tests
- Hearing aid evaluation, dispensing, fitting and tuning
- Preoperative testing of hearing and facial function for adults with vestibular schwannomas/ acoustic neuromas
- Intraoperative monitoring – monitoring cranial nerve function during surgery, to help preserve hearing and reduce risk of facial paralysis or impairment to other cranial nerves
- Hearing rehabilitation
Our cutting edge diagnostic testing is conducted within the Audiology Division. Pure-tone testing determines the faintest tone levels heard at a variety of pitches. Speech audiometry involves listening to words to determine how well you understand what you’re hearing. Impedance evaluation shows how your middle ear is working mechanically. The auditory brainstem response is used to determine how the hearing nerve works and can be used for both diagnostic testing in adults, or for hearing testing in newborns and infants. Facial nerve testing – if a patient is referred to us with impaired facial function – determines if the facial nerve is working properly.
Depending on your hearing concern, you may be seen only by an audiologist or also by an otologist. Audiologists handle diagnostics using advanced audiologic testing. They are also qualified to prescribe, fit and tune appropriate hearing aids and provide other non-surgical interventions including the treatment of tinnitus (ringing in the ear). You must see an audiologist for your diagnosis. The otologist performs any surgical intervention and may carry out or order additional diagnostic evaluations. The otologist uses the audiological information along with other medical information to formulate a medical diagnosis and recommend or initiate medical or surgical intervention. The goal for audiologists and otologists is to preserve your hearing and rehabilitate hearing loss.
Unique to our culture is the collaboration that exists between the audiologists and otologists. Sharing in patient care and collaborating on their hearing concerns means we can make cohesive and comprehensive treatment decisions.
The University of Michigan team is very experienced at treating rare forms of hearing loss that others may not be comfortable treating, such as Meniere’s disease (a disorder of the inner ear that causes vertigo and ringing in the ears), superior canal dehiscence syndrome (a rare condition where the roof of the superior semicircular canal in the inner ear is missing), or hearing loss caused by malfunction of the immune system.
Our hearing aid dispensing program provides excellent service and very competitive prices for hearing aid services.