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Deafness/Hearing Impairment/18 month old- Inner ear and hearing


My son just turned 18 months.  He passed his newborn hearing test (although nurse told me it took about 20 minutes.. which at the time I didn't think anything of it.. until I watched other do it and realized its like a 2 minute test)....  then as we did screenings from there, he kept on getting referred from the OAE (about 8 times from october to feb.).  They did a visual response test, which he only did so-so (mild to moderately severe based on responses). But then again, he is pretty calm and hard to tell if he can't hear or just doesn't want to respond.  From Jan- March he did have ear infections.  A ABR was completed in March.. right ear responded great (no hearing loss).. left ear mild- moderate loss, but there was also fluid build up on the left side.  They did a bone conduction abr, but said the fluid can still throw off those results.  Anyway, a CT scan showed that he is missing the semi-circular canals on the left side and its malformed on the right.  What does that mean with regards to his hearing?

Sorry about the delay response...I guess the question didn't come through the first time.

I honestly have no experience with hearing loss and missing semi-circular canals.  I'm sure there could be a correlation since the cochlea and canals share the same fluid which must stimulate both neurologically.
I would think your baby would need continual hearing testing, even if the results are normal, just to monitor and watch for any progression of hearing loss.  Both ABR and OAE are the standard of care for testing so you will probably have those several times in the future.  It's true fluid can and often will alter the results of both types of testing.  This affect can vary.  Sometimes we can get results with fluid present, sometimes we can't.  It's just way the human body works, not a predictable pattern, so it can seem unreliable.  

The most important thing is to have an audiologist and an otologist that you are comfortable with and let them educate and guide you through the process of finding answers.

Thank you for your question.
Kelley Linton, AuD
Doctor of Audiology

Deafness/Hearing Impairment

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Dr. Kelley Linton


I'm an audiologist in private practice in Arkansas. I graduated from the University of Florida medical school. I specialize in hearing loss; hearing rehabilitation; hearing aids; noise induced hearing loss; occupational noise exposure; OSHA guidelines and regulations; hearing protection; tinnitis; newborn hearing testing; children and hearing loss and diagnosis and etiology of hearing loss.


I've been a practicing audiologist for 20 years and have owned a private practice for 14 years. I am also an audiologist in the United States Army where I teach DOD hearing conservation regulations and manage 3000 DOD employees at an army industrial facility.

Arkansas Academy of Audiology American Academy of Audiology Academy of Doctors of Audiology American Speech and Hearing Association National Hearing Conservation Association

Journal of the Academy of Audiology Southwest Times Record, Fort Smith, Arkansas Press Argus Courier, Van Buren, Arkansas

Au.D. - Doctor of Audiology, University of Florida American Academy of Audiology fellow member Audiology Board Certification American Speech and Hearing Association certification Arkansas State Audiology license-current CPT United States Army Medical Corps

Awards and Honors
American Speech and Hearing Association "ACE" award x 7 years United States Army Accommodation Award Arkansas Academy of Audiology elected board of director x 3 years Better community award, Fort Smith, AR for volunteer audiology service to free community health clinic

Past/Present Clients
Serving newborn to geriatric ages.....unable to provide specific names.

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