Symptoms and Diagnosis of Ear Problems

The audiologists at St. John Hospital and Medical Center are equipped to provide a complete range of audiologic and vestibular testing and rehabilitative services, including hearing aid selection and dispensing.

Appointments can be scheduled by contacting Audiology at 313-343-3165. You can contact audiologists at St. John Hospital and Medical Center via e-mail at

Screening Procedures
Tests to screen hearing ability are quick and cost effective ways to separate people into two categories. People who pass the screening are presumed to have normal hearing. People who fail the screening are referred for an in-depth hearing assessment by an audiologist to determine if a hearing problem exists. There are several different screening procedures that can be used depending upon the patient’s age and abilities.

Newborns and infants are screened by non-invasive, objective physiologic measures such as otoacoustic emissions (OAEs) and/or auditory brainstem response (ABR). These tests are done quickly and painlessly while the infant is resting quietly.

The most appropriate screening tests for children between the ages of seven months to three years are visual reinforcement audiometry (VRA) and conditioned play audiometry (CPA). Both of these tests are behavioral in nature and require the child’s involvement and cooperation.

Finally, conventional audiometry, where individuals raise their hand when they hear a tone, is typically used to screen for hearing loss in people aged 4 years to adult.

Telephone screening for hearing loss has limitations Hearing screening by telephone can alert the public to hearing loss and may convince many people to seek a more complete hearing evaluation. But, according to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s (ASHA) Committee on Audiologic Evaluation, telephone hearing screening has serious limitations.

These limitations include:
Test signals are limited to frequencies below 3000 Hz so hearing at higher frequencies, that are important for understanding speech, are not screened. The signal that is actually heard varies depending on the type of answering machine used to conduct the tests, the telephone transmission lines, the type of telephone used by the caller, background noise and the position of the telephone relative to the listener’s ear. Due to these limitations, two persons calling the same telephone screening number from different telephones may actually receive different tests. In fact, the same person using the same telephone may not receive exactly the same test each time he or she calls. Therefore, the results from telephone hearing screening should be viewed with caution.

Hearing Assessment
Hearing assessment is used to quantify and qualify hearing ability with respect to the degree of hearing loss, the type of hearing loss and the configuration of hearing loss. Audiological evaluation can also be carried out for purposes of monitoring an already identified hearing loss. An audiologic evaluation consists of a battery of tests, with each test providing complementary and specific stand-alone information. It typically includes a case history, a physical examination of the ear, tests of hearing and listening involving pure-tone and speech stimuli, and tests of middle ear function. Sometimes, specialized electrophysiological tests are employed to give more specific information about the status of the neural pathways used in hearing. Once a complete audiologic assessment has been completed, a treatment and management plan can be put in place. This plan may include medical intervention, monitoring of hearing or use of amplification. 

Appointments can be scheduled by contacting the Audiology department 313-343-3165. You can also contact audiologists at St. John Hospital via e-mail at

Location and Directions
St. John Hospital and Medical Center Audiology Department
Professional Building One, Suite 223
22151 Moross Road
Detroit, MI 48236
Ph: 313-343-3165

From I-94, take Moross Road exit 224A, go east on Moross about 3/4 of a mile. St. John Hospital and Medical Center is on the left. Parking for Professional Building One is available in the North lot and East Parking deck ($2) or Valet Parking is available at the entrance to Professional Building One ($3).

request information