About Hearing Loss

Hearing loss is the most common and frequently undiagnosed, untreated medical condition in our patient population. 25 million Americans suffer from some form of hearing loss, including 1 in 4 older than 65. There is also a significant increase in hearing loss among the diabetic population. Diabetes is often first detected in the course of an eye exam. Many people with hearing loss delay being tested. As with your vision, early intervention and corrective action can most often restore a high quality of life by improving your hearing. The hearing services provided by the Hearing Institute of St. Louis, like our vision services, have literally transformed lives.

Two Main Types of Hearing Loss

There are two main types of hearing loss that affect our patient population. It is important to know what kind of hearing loss is causing your inability to hear as clearly as you would like. Conductive loss is said to be caused by an injury or problem with the bones, eardrums or membranes within the ear. This type of loss is treated surgically or medically and often includes the use of hearing instruments.

The second and most common cause of hearing loss is called Sensorineural Loss. Sensorineural Loss is also known as “nerve deafness.” It is caused by damage to the nerves of the inner ear. Although Sensorineural Loss is not curable, most people (90%) suffering from this type of loss can be helped with hearing instruments. Sensorineural and Conductive losses can sometimes act together to form a Mixed loss.

Diagnosis and Treatment

As with any medical condition, the earlier a hearing loss is detected and treated, the greater the chances are for a successful rehabilitation. The Hearing Institute of St. Louis is equipped to provide comprehensive state-of-the-art audiometeric evaluations. This simple, painless diagnostic testing provides accurate information on the nature and degree of your hearing loss. Once a diagnosis is made, the staff will either refer you to a medical doctor for continued care or fit you with the hearing enchancement device that is best suited to your hearing needs and lifestyle. Keep in mind that the appropriate instrument should be chosen for your needs, not appearance. The good news is that the latest technologies provide outstanding performance very inconspicuously.