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At Norton Children’s ENT & Audiology, affiliated with the UofL School of Medicine, our team recognizes that hearing loss can affect the whole family. We’re here to provide support and help connect you with other families who share a common journey. We will perform the necessary tests to create a precise diagnosis of any hearing loss in a child and work with the family to create an individualized treatment plan.
At Norton Children’s ENT & Audiology, our pediatric audiologists perform painless and noninvasive hearing tests. There are a number of different tests that can be performed based on your child’s age and development. Results will be ready before you leave the office and, with your consent, our pediatric audiologists can share the results with others involved in your child’s health care or education.
Tympanometry. A small earphone is placed in the child’s ear, and air pressure is changed in the ear canal to see how flexible the eardrum is. Results can be used to determine if the child has fluid in the ear or a perforation (hole) in the eardrum. This test is used with all ages.
Otoacoustic emissions (OAE hearing test). A small earphone is placed in the child’s ear, and tones are played. A small “echo” is recorded from the inner ear by the same earphone. This test is used with all ages.
Auditory brainstem response (ABR). This test involves placing sensors (electrodes) onto the child’s forehead and ears. Earphones are placed into the ears to play different sounds. The electrodes on the head and ears record the child’s brain waves in response to the sounds. Depending on your child’s age, pediatric audiologists may perform this test during natural sleep in the comfort of our clinic or with mild sedation at a Norton Children’s facility.
Visual reinforcement audiometry. With the child seated on an adult’s lap in a sound-treated room, voices and other sounds are played either through speakers or small earphones in the child’s ears. When the child responds to a sound, a lighted toy is turned on so that they are motivated to continue listening.
Conditioned play audiometry. This is a modification of a traditional hearing test. The child wears small earphones or headphones and is asked to respond to beeping sounds by performing a specific task, such as dropping a block in a container or placing a peg into a pegboard.
In addition to testing and treatment, our pediatric audiologists provide:
In Kentucky, children up to age 3 with at least mild hearing loss in both ears can qualify for the First Steps early intervention program. If your child is identified with hearing loss or if our pediatric audiologists determine hearing is normal but your child has other developmental concerns, your child may be eligible. With your permission, we can contact First Steps, which may authorize certain services at our office and in the community.
Children with hearing loss who do not meet First Steps criteria for services or children who are newly identified with hearing loss after age 3 may be eligible to receive care through in-person or telehealth services with our listening and spoken language (LSL) providers.
LSL therapy can help your child maximize listening and spoken language from home with their own toys. Thanks to an Oberkotter Foundation grant, Norton Children’s ENT & Audiology offers LSL therapy via telehealth at no cost.
Our goal is to help you maximize the time your child has their “ears on.” A child with any degree of hearing loss can learn to listen and talk. Your LSL therapist will help you learn fun and effective ways to increase listening and language into daily interactions with your child.
Coaching strategies focus on parents and caregivers being your child’s first and best teachers.