Tympanometry test is probably the most effective and most efficient test ever devised for evaluating the middle ear system. It is useable with children, adults, and seniors. It is a wonderfully effective and efficient procedure that permits us to get a great deal of high-quality information quickly without any overt effort on the part of the patient (ie, the patient doesn’t have to do anything). In fact, the patient doesn’t even have to be conscious or feeling especially participatory—one more reason why this test is useful and effective, especially for special populations. tympanometry tells hearing professionals whether that patient needs to be referred for medical treatment or medical evaluation;
it provides a very quick, very accurate, physiologic test that helps us understand the condition of the middle ear. Determining the type and cause of patient hearing loss can be like a putting together a puzzle, and the many tests that make up a thorough hearing evaluation are like pieces to that puzzle. Often used to assess the function of the middle ear, tympanometry is one important test that can determine whether patients who have hearing loss can be helped by hearing aids or whether a medical treatment is available to treat their loss instead. Tympanometers are basic accessories at Ear Nose and Throat clinics, ENT departments in hospitals and in audiology clinics. Tympanometry is an objective test of middle-ear function. It is not a hearing test, but rather a measure of energy transmission through the middle ear. The test should not be used to assess the sensitivity of hearing and the results of this test should always be viewed in conjunction with pure tone audiometry. Tympanometry is a valuable component of the audiometric evaluation. In evaluating hearing loss, tympanometry permits a distinction between sensorineural and conductive hearing loss, when evaluation is not apparent via Weber and Rinne testing. Furthermore, in a primary care setting, tympanometry can be helpful in making the diagnosis of otitis media by demonstrating the presence of a middle ear effusion.