Tinnitus Assessment: What to Expect
Purpose: Learn about YOUR tinnitus and how it affects your life, as well as possible causes for your tinnitus and strategies for relief and management.
Please bring a close relative (spouse, adult child, etc) to your appointment to get the most out of our time together. Having a support network to help you is invaluable.
We use an otoscope to visualize your outer ear and ear canal and remove any wax, if necessary. You can see inside your own ear, too!
What we like to call the “boring beeps”. It’s a standard measurement to identify the type (conductive, sensorineural, or mixed), shape, and degree of your hearing loss (normal, mild, moderate, severe, and profound or a mixture of several based on frequency). Don’t worry, we’ll pick a stimulus so you can separate our exam sounds from your tinnitus.
A variety of speech measurements to assess your speech understanding abilities in quiet and in noise at various volumes.
Depending on your history and various exam scores, it may be necessary to measure your eardrum movement and acoustic reflex pathways.
Depending on your needs, a full tinnitus measurement may be performed. We will measure the pitch and volume of your subjective tinnitus and determine your brain’s reaction to certain stimuli.
Based on your test results and your tinnitus perception, we will discuss management options that are appropriate for you. Counseling for tinnitus can vary significantly based on each individual’s needs. You are as much a part of this decision as we are.
Initial Treatment Plan
We will learn more about your lifestyle, desires, and preferences and make recommendations to get you back to living your best life. Tinnitus is typically a chronic condition but it CAN be managed through a variety of techniques. We will teach you about your options- there is hope! We may try some options while you’re in the office. We will also make any appropriate referrals to other healthcare partners, if necessary.
Some Treatment Options
There are various treatment and management options depending on your perception of tinnitus and how it effects you. For individuals with hearing loss, the most appropriate treatment is hearing devices as the first step towards relief. 80%+ of the time, this is a very successful tinnitus relief strategy that also improves communication, social engagement, and quality of life improvement.
We are advocates of an educational counseling approach integrating principles from a variety of tinnitus treatment methods such as Cognitive Habituation Tinnitus Therapy (CHaTT), Progressive Tinnitus Management (PTM), Tinnitus Activities Treatment (TAT), and Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT). We will start your counseling during your first appointment. We will discuss your options and make a plan together.
There are tinnitus specific therapies that are also available. For those with normal hearing or those not ready to treat their hearing loss, other options will be discussed.
Your initial tinnitus appointment (includes: thorough case history and interview, listening to your story, diagnostic hearing evaluation, tinnitus measurements and psychoacoustic testing, and initial counseling) is $264.
Insurance Contribution- Some insurances will cover portions of the tinnitus assessment. If you provide us with your insurance information prior to your appointment, we can learn more about your financial responsibility. Medicare requires a physician referral and their contribution will cover the diagnostic portion of the appointment only.