Cochlear implantation is a remarkable technology that has transformed the lives of individuals with severe to profound hearing loss. Before this life-changing procedure, candidates often undergo various assessments to determine their candidacy to optimise the outcomes. For very young children or adults who cannot give reliable behavioural responses, we may need to conduct Auditory Steady State Response (ASSR) testing to have an estimation of the hearing thresholds.
What is Auditory Steady State Response (ASSR) Testing?
Auditory Steady State Response (ASSR) testing is an objective electrophysiological evaluation used to obtain the hearing thresholds estimation of individuals, particularly those with severe to profound hearing loss. It measures the neural responses of the auditory system to specific frequency tones or modulated signals.
The Importance of ASSR Testing for Cochlear Implant Candidates
Cochlear implant candidates undergo ASSR testing to gather crucial information about their severity of hearing level. This assessment aids in determining the feasibility of fitting with hearing aids and setting appropriate device parameters before considering cochlear implant. Candidates with difficulty giving behavioural responses to traditional hearing tests, such as pure-tone audiometry, benefit significantly from ASSR testing.
Performing ASSR Testing and Patient Expectations
During ASSR testing, electrodes are placed on the candidate’s scalp to measure the electrical activity of the auditory pathway in response to specific auditory stimuli. These stimuli are presented through headphones or insertphones, and the candidate is asked to sit or lie comfortably during the test. The procedure is painless and non-invasive, and patients generally experience minimal discomfort.
Benefits of ASSR Testing for Cochlear Implant Candidates:
- High accuracy of Hearing Threshold Estimation: ASSR testing provides objective and high accuracy information about a candidate’s hearing thresholds across a range of frequencies, even when they cannot provide reliable behavioural responses. This information helps to determine the hearing threshold estimation which provides important information in candidacy assessment of cochlear implants.
- Individualised Device Programming: ASSR testing results contribute to the personalised programming of hearing aids, ensuring optimal level of amplification for the hearing aids according to the frequency-specific thresholds obtained.
- Predicting Hearing Aid Benefit: ASSR testing results can help predict the benefit of hearing aids. In some cases where there are no responses observed from the Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR), ASSR will be done to double confirm on the hearing sensitivity. Due to the nature of the stimulation signal, ASSR is able to present at a higher average sound pressure level which adds more value to ABR when having an evaluation on the auditory sensitivity of very young children or difficult-to-test adults.
Comprehensive CI Candidacy Assessment
The Listening Lab Cochlear Implant Clinic in Singapore utilises ASSR testing as one of the comprehensive evaluations for some of the cochlear implant candidates. The clinic’s experienced audiologists conduct thorough assessments, including ASSR testing in some cases, to determine each candidate’s suitability for cochlear implantation.
Auditory Steady State Response (ASSR) testing plays a vital role in evaluating some of the cochlear implant candidates in Singapore. This objective assessment provides high accuracy information about a candidate’s hearing thresholds, aids in device programming, and predicts benefits from hearing aids. With the help of ASSR testing, those visiting us at the Listening Lab Cochlear Implant Center for cochlear implant candidacy assessment will receive a comprehensive assessment depending on the individual’s age and behavioural condition.
The Listening Lab Singapore
If you or a loved one is considering cochlear implantation in Singapore, it is essential to consult with a reputable clinic like The Listening Lab Cochlear Implant Center. Our audiologists will conduct a comprehensive evaluation, including ASSR testing when needed, to determine candidacy and provide appropriate advice based on the results obtained from different assessments.
Remember, the decision to undergo cochlear implantation is significant, and thorough assessments such as ASSR testing contribute to the procedure’s success especially for very young children. By leveraging the benefits of this objective evaluation, candidates can be given an accurate diagnosis resulting in a reliable candidacy assessment.
Auditory Steady State Response (ASSR) testing is a valuable tool in the auditory thresholds estimation for cochlear implant candidates in addition to ABR and other diagnostic assessment in Singapore. Through this objective evaluation, candidates’ hearing thresholds are measured with high accuracy, enabling programming of the hearing aids with the frequency specific information and prediction of benefits from the device. The Listening Lab Cochlear Implant Center utilises ASSR testing to provide diagnosis, maximising the benefits of hearing aids and ensuring optimal amplification of device before considering cochlear implant. Enquire today to find out more about candidacy assessment for yourself or your loved one.