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Hi everyone, this is my first post and was after some advice.
I've been suffering with hearing loss for a couple of years now, mainly trying to follow conversations either in the office where I work, I've noticed my hearing is bad if I'm out with friends, even walking through the city centre, I can't hear them speak, or say if it's windy and I'm out of town, I'm still struggling.
I can't hear my phone ring if it's in my pocket, and I can't use my phone in crowded places.
It's really started to affect my confidence and it's more noticeable now I've gone back into working in an office.
I went and had a hearing test done privately and was told I had a blockage in my ear and conductive hearing loss and given a letter to go to ENT
The letter has someone's else's name on it and I was a bit dubious, so I went for another test elsewhere, and the audiologist confirmed that I had sensoneurial hearing loss and no blocked ears and gave me a letter for my GP as I'm only 40
I went to see my GP who confirmed again no blockages in my ears and I've finally got my appointment after a 3 month wait, which is on 20th Feb, just before my 41st birthday.
I'm just a bit confused with everything and wanted to know what I should expect. I've been referred to ENT specialist registrar, not sure what this means.
Can anyone give me an idea of what to expect, and do they just test my hearing, or do they do other tests to tell what type of hearing loss I've got
Thanks in advanxe
Hi Dave, That sounds like a good day. Im sorry about the diagnosis, but you can move forward now and take some practical steps. And great news about NHS aids (rather than private) Of course you should go that route! You will have long term support and I gather its not like the old days, they are as advanced on the technology front as any high street.
Im also sorry there may be a link to your cancer treatment. The little bugger throws this curved ball at you. I am sorry.
But Im pleased you had a good appointment and your consultant sounds like he not only covered all the bases, but he/she has started you on some positive steps. Thats brilliant.
On the hearing aid front, Im sure theres loads of posters here who can help with experience and expectations etc, but Im sure they will make a phenomenal difference. A good day indeed. Happy birthday for whenever it is, catch up soon. Caroline.
Sent from my iPad
Oh blimey, sounds like a right palaver
Apologies as I'm typing this on my phone. I hope specsavers works out for you and you get your hearing sorted out once and for all, shame about your experience with the nhs, don't let it put you off, see if specsavers can give you a referral letter or something.
I had my appointment today, had the hearing test again and the bone conduction test,answered a lot of questions, didn't really ask any as it was all covered.
I've got 60% hearing loss in most frequencies, and 70% loss in the rest of the frequencies, it's either 60 to 70 dB loss or % loss, I can't quite remember.
The consultant was lovely, he said it could be because of my chemo 7 years ago, due to me being a few days short of my 41st birthday and has prescribed hearing aids.
I had some moulds taken of my ears and will receive an appointment for 6 to 8 weeks time for the fitting.
I could have gone private, but hearing aids cost a fortune, so it's now a waiting game until I get them fitted
Had a roller coaster week here. Thursday there was a distinct change to my dead ear, high pitch squeely noise appeared. Can only describe it like having high pitched clangers (the childrens cartoon) in there. My own voice, noises, music, tv in general etc cause this squeely whistling. Somethings clearly going on, which is good, and I did then get a call for an audiology appointment on friday.
So feeling slightly guilty that yes Ive clearly queue jumped, I went on friday and took a friend with me. Point 1. Im so glad I took a friend. (will explain).
I had a hearing test, very much as Ian has described. It was in a soundproof small room, and both sides were tested with tones (press the button when you hear something), then had a pad thing put on the bone behind my ear and tested again, and also as Ian mentioned, there were a set of tests with background noise going on. Then back to the consultant for a very brief chat. (said friend was brilliant here).
Ive got moderate/severe hearing loss in one ear. Long pause. Silence. Well yes, I said, what does that mean? He looked a little confused, so I said, well can you give me the results? When you say Ive got hearing loss can you share what youve found? (It was like pullng teeth). My test results, which were on like a wide roll of till paper had already been attached inside my file, so he opened the file and slid the result chart across the table to me. (Point 2, I wish Id asked for a copy before I left, but will ring next week and ask if I can have a copy of the results). He then pointed out I have 70 decibel hearing loss in my low/mid frequencies and normal in my high. It was a straight line from the left, then a sharp curve up on the right side of the chart. There was then more silence. (not the dramatic sort, more like the awkward conversation sort, like eveyones waiting for someone to make polite conversation).
Friend pops up (god bless her!) OK, so what do we do? She asks. Nothing. Wait and see. Oh thats good she said, will it come back? No probably not, but it may improve........it may stay the same....it may get worse.. Me: Ok, so when you say wait and see, are we talking weeks, months? Oh definately months, well, whenever really, you may get a change at any time, but you may not. Freind, well whats caused it? Shoulder shrug. More silence as we wait. Friend, what about a hearing aid? Oh not at all he replied instantly, your other ear is perfectly fine. We sat in a few more moments silence. I was utterly befuddled. Eventually, I said thank you, and we got up and left.
The pair of us came out and both said, wtf! :) (A friend is priceless) It was possibly one of the oddest ‘consults’ Ive ever had. However, redemption was just around the corner......at Specsavers! I said, can we go home, have a cuppa and work out just what happened there, and she said, Nope, we’re in town, lets call in at specsavers and make an appointment. So we did. They were absolutely awesome. Just walking in off the street, I explained what had happened this week and that morning, and immediately she started filling in some ‘knowledge’ gaps.
She described back to me exactly what I was currently ‘hearing’/not hearing’, how disorientating it was etc how she understood. (Cause I didnt!) By then, the sensible questions I should have asked at the NHS clinic, I was able to ask of her. If I have high frequency hearing, why cant I hear? And she explained how low frequency is basically the ‘volume’ control, high frequency the ‘clarity’ controls, but when you lose low frequencies like I have, in short, my volume button has been turned right down across the spectrum. It made total sense to what Im experiencing. Would a hearing aid help me? I asked. Of course it would!!!! She replied.
I cant tell you how that response from Specsavers, suddenly changed eveything. (Its a roller coaster :) So she booked me in and I had an appontment with them on saturday. (Ill continue this story on another thread, but well done Specsavers is all can say)
Dave, take your questions with you, written down. Make sure you ask what you want to know now. Do ask for you test results, if nothing else, as we become experts in our own condition its going to be really usefull to have a benchmark and help you monitor yourself how your hearing loss progresses/improves (fingers crossed). Do ask for diagnosis if they can give one. (I will follow up my situation, probably via my GP, re disgnosis/cause etc though of course, the end result is probably theres nothing to be done and it is what it is, it would still be nice to know if there was a specific cause).
Said awesome friend is as mad as hell. When she asked about a hearing aid in the NHS appointment, she meant, would an aid help me? Shes mad that the consultant didnt then explain, whether an aid could or couldnt help me hear, and instead (we assume) answered a question about local funding. That is, (it appears) if you have one good ear, youre not eligible for an NHS aid. We werent asking that question, though of course its now on my huge long list of questions to find out about local funding etc.
So be very clear about your condition, care, diagnosis, ongoing management, would aids help etc. What to expect etc etc I got none of that from my audiology appointment, and Im kicking myself.
Good luck for next week, keeping fingers crossed, and would love to hear how you get on. Caroline.
I've had hearing aids for 4 years now, I was 55 at the time I was first fitted.
I remember my ENT appointment quite clearly. After checking in I was taken to see an audiologist who carried out a couple of tests. They were both pure tone tests and included a bone conduction test.
Both tests also included "masking" where you listen for the tones while having a background noise played at the same time, so you have to try and pick out the pure tones from the noise. of course that's when it's difficult.
Following the tests I had to sit and wait a short time then I went to see an ENT doctor, who looked at my test results and we had a brief discussion around my daily hearing and listening situations after which he prescribed hearing aids.
As I say, that was four years ago, but boy, what a difference hearing aids have made.
I can identify with everything you've said when you describe those daily situations where you find it difficult to hear and understand. I was exactly the same as you.
Hi Caroline I hope you get an appointment soon, I know how frustrating it can be, I waited 2 months and heard nothing (excuse the pun) and my urgent appointment took almost 6 weeks from referral to appointment next week. Like yourself i'm struggling with noisy environments.
Even in the office I was sat next to someone who was explaining something, and there were 2 other people talking at the other side of the office, only 8 feet away, but I couldn't hear the person next to me.
I had cancer 7 years ago, and that's my only major health blip, I've also gone to a lot of concerts/raves the past 20 years but I've always worn earplugs, i just think it's one of those things as I'm getting older. It does get embarrassing when you're trying to follow a conversation with what you think someone has said and then chipping in based on the misheard conversation, only to look stupid, I started noticing that a couple of years ago.
Hope you're tolerating the steroids ok and managing to sleep, there's nothing worse than not being able to sleep, and hope you're another day closer to getting your hearing sorted :)