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Tympanometry testing gives accurate measurements on how well the eardrum is vibrating when the sound waves strike and how precisely the tiny ear bones are functioning to propagate those sound vibrations to the hearing organs. The test also measures the pressure in the space behind the eardrum where tiny ear bones are located.
Impedance testing or Tympanometry tests the functioning of the middle ear. The test examines the flexibility (also known as Compliance) of the eardrum when the air pressure changes. The recorded compliance is an indication of how effectively sound is travelling into the middle ear. The test examines the hearing ability on various parameters.
The soft probe used to carry out impedance testing adjusts to your ear size. The probe has three channels:
The Tympanometry testing hearing assessment is highly conclusive and is used widely by audiometrists to distinguish the type of hearing loss using various parameters. The results of an impedance testing session can be classified into various categories such as Type A, Type Ad, Type AS, Type B, Type B-HighVolumeand Type C. The results for an impedance testing can indicate ear canal volume (cm3), the peak compliance (eardrum flexibility in ml) and the maximum pressure (daPa).
An impedance test examines the tympanic membrane and the middle ear using scientifically sound methods that are absolutely safe. It is also performed to evaluate the acoustic reflex pathways (including cranial nerves (CN) VII and VII and the auditory brainstem).
In the process of impedance audiometry, the ear canal is sealed with an acoustic probe that is coupled with a pressure pump. By rapid variation of the pressure, reference sounds are presented. The impedance of the middle ear depends upon the difference between the emitted pressure and the probe recording. As a result, it is a pretty feasible task to ascertain the amount of sound energy absorbed by the tympanic membrane.
Note: It is worth noting that one can achieve a quantitative measurement of hearing from the audiogram and as such, it doesn’t give a measure of the quality of sound perceived by the patient.