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Hearing Disorders: Do you need a hearing aid

Hearing Disorders Do you need a hearing aid

Among the disorders of the auditory system, some pathologies are operable when others require the establishment of an apparatus.

Hearing pathologies are grouped into two major families: deafness that surgery can correct and those that require hearing aids. The outer ear (horn and ear canal) and the middle ear (the eardrum and the three ossicles behind) constitute the same entity, only mechanical. It will be the seat of diseases that affect the eardrum: wax plug, acute otitis … Chronic ear infections can permanently alter hearing. This deafness, due to a disturbance of the mechanism of sound transmission, can be remedied by surgery: the eardrum and the ossicles (hammer, anvil and stirrup) are repaired so that the sound is normally transmitted to the ear internal.

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Another possible disorder is otosclerosis. This disease blocks the chain of ossicles, precisely at the level of the one that articulates with the inner ear. We can then correct the loss of hearing by removing the osselet which will be replaced by a small prosthesis. We are talking here about so-called transmission deafness.

When the inner ear is affected, the surgical approach is not possible

For deafness due to damage to the inner ear (seat of sound analysis and channeling to the auditory cortex) and auditory nerve, the surgical path is not feasible. Hearing loss can only be corrected by a hearing aid. These are so-called perception deafness. An inflammatory or infectious disease, a shock in the skull, meningitis can be at the origin. But the most common cause is the degradation of the auditory system due to aging. We are talking about presbycusis.

This age-related decline in hearing occurs in subjects over the age of 50 who experience significant discomfort in noise and a misunderstanding in conversation. “You can hear but you do not understand.You can confuse one word with another, especially in a noisy atmosphere.This is a sign that the hearing begins to deteriorate,” said Dr. Pascal Foeillet, Orl. “If tinnitus (wheezing, tinnitus) occurs that did not exist before, it’s a sign that you need to see and have a hearing test,” says the hospital practitioner who says tinnitus is a symptom that reflects the impairment of the auditory system, regardless of where it is touched. “A plug of earwax (most common outer ear) can also cause one. Correcting deafness of a patient, either by an appliance or by surgery, will reduce tinnitus, “says Orl.

The deterioration of hearing accelerated by arterial hypertension, diabetes, cholesterol

Prof. Hung Tai Van, Head of Audiology and Orofacial Explorations in Lyon (Edouard Herriot Hospital) stresses the importance of the exam at Orl. “The specialist must offer a hearing assessment that is not just a simple audiogram.It is essential to measure the ability to understand the sounds of words through voice audiometry.This test can identify, from the age of 40 or 50 years physiological auditory aging. ” And warns: “The deterioration of hearing can be accelerated by high blood pressure, diabetes, increased cholesterol levels, and especially occupational exposure to noise.”

Another dysfunction of hearing, hyperacusis. This disturbance of the auditory pattern can appear after exposure to a very high level of noise (concerts, discotheques, shooting with a rifle …). If it is more rare, this pathology can make daily life unbearable. Dr. Pascal Foeillet explains: “It is a hypersensitivity to the so-called normal sound, the sounds a little strong.Parently, an ear that does not hear well, poorly perceives weak sounds but more intensely sounds a bit strong. the mere fall of a small metal object becomes unpleasant. ” A disabling pathology and often misunderstood by the entourage.

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