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Other Medical Tests

Read this page if you want to know about other medical tests (other than hearing tests) your doctor may have ordered.

Photo of a boy standing in a wading pool

Why your child might need these tests

  • To tell you more about what caused your child's hearing loss
  • To make sure your child doesn't have other problems that are sometimes found in children with hearing loss
  • To help decide what kind of treatments will help

What tests your doctor may want
Your doctor may want to test these parts of your child's body for other problems:

  • Eyes

    • Being able to see well is very important for your child. There are also some eye problems that are more common in children who are deaf or hard of hearing.
    • An ophthalmologist (an eye doctor) will check your childís eyes.
    • The ophthalmologist may want to do a test called an ERG (electroretinogram). This test checks for signs of a genetic disease called Usherís syndrome.
  • Kidneys

    • Children who are deaf or hard of hearing are more likely to have kidney problems than other children.
    • Your doctor may check your childís kidneys by doing blood or urine tests.
    • Your doctor may also want to look at your childís kidneys using ultrasound. If you want to know more about this, read Ears and Kidneys on the Boys Town website.
  • Heart

    • If your child was born with a severe hearing loss, the doctor may want to check her heart.
    • He may order an ECG (electrocardiogram) to measure the electrical activity of the heart.
    • A rare genetic disorder causes both deafness and problems with the heartís rhythm. This disorder is called Jervell and Lange-Nielsen syndrome.
  • Thyroid

    • The thyroid is a small gland in the neck that releases chemicals that control how your body uses energy.
    • Children with a rare genetic disorder called Pendred syndrome may have thyroid glands that donít work well. Some of the signs of this are being tired all the time, gaining weight, and getting constipated. Your doctor may ask if your child has any of these signs.
    • She will also check the size of your childís thyroid gland.

Other kinds of tests your child may need

  • Genetic test

    • Genetic testing may tell you why your child is deaf.
    • Genetic testing may also tell you if children you have in the future may also be deaf. Read more about this in our genetics of hearing loss section.
  • CT scan

      A CT scan is a kind of x-ray that lets the doctor see what your childís inner ear looks like.
    • The CT scan may tell the doctor the reason for the hearing loss.
    • The CT scan can also tell the doctor if your child could be helped by certain types of hearing aids or a cochlear implant.

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NIDCD

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
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