Monday, March 21, 2011

Hearing loss

I've been suffering from slight left ear ringing (mostly sounds like low frequency hum) and blockage.

Went to ear doctor today and had measurements and wax cleaning.  The wax cleaning immediately improved the openness of my hearing, but the ringing did not go away.

The tests (unfortunately taken only before the cleaning) showed a 30dB notch at 4Khz.  The doctor said that my overall hearing was about 15dB better than average overall, which would make the notch only 15dB compared to that.  Also, the notch itself was better than with most men my age (55).  At higher frequencies above the notch, my hearing response goes back up again, being considereably better than most men my age.  He said most men get notches in the 4K region as a result of industrial or recreational noises.

Unfortunately I can't know how much the wax cleaning improved things in the measured response.  Perhaps after the cleaning the notch depth reduced to a mere 15dB, which is what was measured in 2004.

Will have to wait until the quiet nighttime at home to hear how much the ringing has gone away.  There didn't seem to be much change in the doctor's office.

If there is additional loss or permanent tinitus, I blame the use of ear buds, even though I try to keep the level reasonable.

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