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(Lan ) OAE Checkup

OAE (Otoacoustic Emissions Test) is a hearing test used for newborn screening test which should be done after the child’s birth and before leaving the hospital.

If your child fails in OAE screening hearing test, it is recommended to have a hearing screening within 3 weeks of life, because failing in first screening does not mean that your child has a hearing loss, he/ she could fail in first screening because of fluid and debris in the ear. In OAEs a miniature ear earphone and microphone are placed in the ear, sounds are played and a response is measured. If the baby hears normally, an echo is reflected back into the ear canal and is measured by the microphone. Whenever a baby has a hearing loss, no echo or a reduced echo can be measured on the OAE test.

It's a low-level sound emitted by the cochlea either spontaneously or evoked by an auditory stimulus and it specifically provide information related to the function of the outer hair cells also known as OHC.

Broadly speaking, there are two types of otoacoustic emissions.

One it is known as Spontaneous Otoacoustic Emissions or say SOAEs, which can occur without external stimulation, and

Another is known as Evoked Otoacoustic Emissions or say EOAEs, which require an evoking stimulus.

Purpose of OAE Checkup : Good hearing is important for your child to learn speech and language. Because a hearing loss can prevent your baby from learning speech and language, it is important to diagnose hearing problems early, which is why we recommend your baby's hearing to be tested.

The purpose of newborn screening is to identify children who are at greater risk for hearing loss so that they may receive timely diagnostic and intervention services. Hearing screenings are NOT diagnostic evaluations. Screening tests identify a need for further diagnostic hearing evaluations.

Hearing loss treatment
Every baby should be consulted by a hearing specialist (an audiologist). Some children with the problem of hearing loss can have a difficulty of visions which you can consult with a pediatric eye doctor. The treatment depends on the type of hearing loss.

If the hearing loss is permanent then the best treatment recommended in children is hearing aids and specialized speech & language therapy. Occasionally, at times your doctor may recommend you a surgical procedure. You will be informed with the communicating choices for your baby including oral communication, total communication, sign language or cued speech.

The viewpoint is excellent for children with hearing loss who commence an early intervention program, typically before the age of 6 months. Research shows that these babies develop more language skills on a par with those of their hearing peers.