Inner Ear Test
Submitted by Nic on October 16, 2012
An inner ear test is usually performed when you experience symptoms such as tinnitus, vertigo, and dizziness. The test may also be performed on the recommendation of your otologist, if there is a discharge in your ears. There are a few tests that are performed to check the health of your inner ear. Your doctor will choose the best inner ear test for you, depending on the presentation of the symptoms and your age. Here are some of the most common tests used for testing your inner ear.
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging: These scans are performed using magnetic waves to create images of the brain. The MRI is an inner ear test performed to check the vestibular system in patients who complain of frequent dizziness.
- Audiometry: This is a hearing test used in determining the auditory functions of the inner ear. This screening test is performed to distinguish between vestibular neuritis and labyrinthitis, using a specific testing apparatus. The test only determines if there is hearing loss, but not the extent of it.
- Tympanometry: This is a test in which the stiffness of the eardrum is measured. This test determines if there is any fluid between the inner and middle ear. It can also help diagnose abnormal inner ear pressure and perforation of the membranes. This test is performed using a special probe designed to check the movement of the eardrum when pressure is applied around the ear. This is also an inner ear balance test.
- BAER Test: The Brainstem Auditory Evoked Response (BAER) test is performed to check the brainstem responses of the inner ear when clicks are made around the ear. This is an auditory test that also checks the brain responses to various sounds. This helps in checking whether the brain is able to process sounds properly.
- Electrocochleography: Also known as the ECOG, this test is performed as an inner ear test for vertigo. This is a secondary test, performed only after a screening test such as audiometry is performed.
- Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potentials: This is a test designed to detect abnormal sensitivities towards normal sounds. This is a painless test. If the vestibular system is diseased, the inner ear test results may be abnormal, and you would need immediate medical attention.
- Electronystagmography: This test, also known as the ENG test, can be used for diagnosing all kinds of ear disorders, especially those that have dizziness and vertigo as a symptom. The test is performed on both ears, one ear at a time.
It is necessary that you get the test done in a proper medical setting with trained medical professionals conducting the test.
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