What is Tympanometry?
Tympanometry is an objective measurement which provides one way of diagnosing and monitoring problems in the middle ear. Tympanometry helps to find and diagnose disorders that may lead to or have already caused a hearing loss. The tympanogram in conjunction with the audiogram helps to determine whether medical treatment is required or hearing aids should be provided. The full immittance measurement battery including the tympanometry test, the evaluation of the function of the interaural muscles (Acoustic Reflex Test and Reflex Decay) and the Eustachian tube (Eustachian Tube Function) helps to differentiate between different pathology types of the middle ear like:
• Middle ear infection (otitis media)
• Perforation of the eardrum
• Fluid in the middle ear
• Tumor of the middle ear
• Ossicular fixation or discontinuity
• Eustachian tube dysfunction
A tympanometry measurement makes it possible to evaluate the middle ear mobility (compliance) in response to changes in air pressure and gives information about the air pressure status in the middle ear. The results of a tympanometry test are recorded on a graph called a tympanogram. A tympanogram represents the relationship between the air pressure in the ear canal and the compliance of the middle ear, which describes the mobility of the tympanic membrane as well as the mobility of the ossicular chain in the air-filled middle ear space.