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Pediatric Hearing Services

Children's Hearing Health Clearwater, FLHearing health assessment and diagnosis is not a one-size-fits-all process. It is vastly different in children and adults. That's why at the Morton Plant Mease Hearing Health Center at the Ptak Orthopaedic & Neuroscience Pavilion, we separate our children and adult services and use individualized, age-appropriate methods. This includes pediatric-specific booths for evaluating even the youngest patients.

Hearing Evaluation

As of July 1, 2000, the State of Florida requires hearing screenings for all newborns prior to discharge from hospitals and birthing centers. Even if a difficulty is determined at this early age, we can provide the necessary follow-up testing. We are equipped and trained to test children of all ages.

  • Pure Tone Audiometry:  This test measures your child’s ability to hear different sound pitches and volumes.
  • Speech Understanding Testing: An audiologist will test your child’s ability to hear, understand and respond to speech by having him or her repeat simple words or point to pictures.
  • Basic Immitance Test Battery: These tests provide information about the status of the outer and middle ear such as the detection of fluid in the middle ear, a perforation of the eardrum, or wax blocking the ear canal.
  • Select Picture Audiometry: Your child will use pictures on cards to indicate how he or she hears sounds.
  • Conditioning Play Audiometry: Children ages two to five are conditioned to respond to sound through play, such as stacking blocks or filling a peg board.
  • Visual Reinforcement Audiometry: Used for children age 7 months to  5 years, this test uses lighted animated toys to train children to look toward sound in the testing booth.

Additional Pediatric Testing Services

There are a variety of other procedures that assess the auditory system and determine the presence of hearing loss. They are sometimes used independently and sometimes to complement the standard series of audiologic tests.

  • Otoacoustic Emissions (OAEs): OAEs are inaudible sounds produced by outer hair cells in the inner ear when they vibrate in response to an audible sound. The inaudible sound echoes back into the middle and outer ear and can be measured with a small, sensitive microphone placed in the ear canal. The presence or absence of OAEs is important in helping to identify hearing loss.
  • Auditory Brainstem Response Testing for Newborns (ABR): This test estimates the level of hearing acuity by looking at brainstem wave responses to a series of clicks presented to each ear. It can be used as a screening procedure for newborns that are at risk for hearing loss, as well as a diagnostic tool to identify infants and small children with a hearing loss.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call (727) 461-8807.