Wednesday, October 28, 2009


One magic little word...."Refer" used to replace a much harsher sounding word..."Failed."
Being a teacher of the deaf I was certain my children would be born deaf. The newborn hearing screening wasn't mandatory at the time but I made sure Noah was screened. Then with Jordan and all of her issues they told me they weren't going to check her hearing. They said it wasn't routine. I very politely informed them that I wasn't leaving until they checked it.
Well she got a "Refer" which is a nice politically correct way of saying that she failed her hearing test. For four months she tested with "no reponse" to sound. The audiologists assured us that it was probably just fluid but I wasn't able to look at or even go near the shelf in our house with my textbooks on hearing loss until I knew for a fact that she could hear. The potential was devastating to me. Thankfuly she got ear tubes and was cleared with great hearing.
I've wondered a few times about all the ear tube surgeries she has and what the lasting effects will be on her tympanic membranes (ha - big word for ear drum...just thought I'd impress you with my vocabulary). A while back she "referred" during a doctor's visit hearing screening but an audiologist who doesn't usually test kids said she was fine (even though I heard her miss high frequency sounds). Then I took her again to the ENT for something else and she "referred" again. Later I tested her myself on an audiometer and it showed a high frequency loss. I chalked it up to attention. Today we were back at the ENT for a tube check and she "referred" again.
The doctor thinks it might be hearing loss due to scar tissue. Bummer. We're praying that they don't send us back to that same adult only audiologist and that we can get to the bottom of this. Thankfully I think it is only in one ear which means even if it's a significan high frequency loss she would not necessarily need hearing aids.
We will keep you posted on the insurance approval and the test results. Pray that we can get in to Providence and that we can get some advice on these surgeries and the lasting affects of ear tubes. Her ENT said she'll have to have them forever.

1 comment:

leah said...

Sending positive thoughts your way- our little guy has a bilateral moderate loss (permanent), but we've struggled with fluid on top of everything else.

For kids who need "permanent' tubes, there are "t-tubes" which stay in for about 4 years at a time (the negative is that they have to be placed AND extracted surgically).

Good luck with the hearing tests!