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Classifying degrees of hearing loss

Audiogram shows in both ears similar results. At 250hz. it's 55db. At 500hz, 45 db. Then progressively worse in higher registers: back to 55db at 1000hz, continuing in more or less a straight line until it is 105db at 8000hz.

I have anywhere from moderate to profound hearing loss depending on which frequency is being queried. But overall, is this considered moderate hearing loss, profound hearing loss, or something in between?
4 Responses
1740498 tn?1328962585
Hi and welcome to the hearing loss community!

What a great question! Typically hearing loss is categorized by the pure tone average (PTA). PTA is calculated using the thresholds at 500, 1000, and 2000 Hz.

For example, my best friend's audiogram from before her cochlear implant shows 100 dB at 500 Hz, 110 dB at 1000 Hz, and 115 dB at 2000 Hz. That is for her better ear. Yes, she is deaf.

To calculate her PTA: 100+110+115=325/3=108 dB. Profound hearing loss.

Suppose a person has thresholds of 60 at 500 Hz, 65 at 1000 Hz, and 90 at 2000 Hz. 60+65+90=215/3=72 dB for the PTA. Severe hearing loss.

But PTA does not take into account the fact that frequencies above 4000 Hz are also important for speech recognition. So PTA is not perfect, but it is the most commonly used tool to label hearing loss.

Thanks for such a great question! Are you involved in the deaf community? Do you sign?

BC
Avatar universal
Thank you for your reply. So according to this I average out approximately 70db, slightly better in the right ear than in the left.

My speech discrimination is much better in the right ear apparently. 80% as opposed to 44%.

I have gotten this far in my life (age 90) without a hearing aid but now, especially since my stroke, I need all the help I can get. I think I originally got some of the high frequency hearing loss when I was a radio operator in Europe for the army in the second World War.but I never did anything about it then.
1740498 tn?1328962585
Hello again Sir,

Isn't it funny how the thresholds on the audiogram do not correlate with speech discrimination? Two people can have PTAs of 80 dB and one might understand friends on the telephone, while the other might understand nothing.

It sounds like you might benefit from hearing aids. Things would probably sound pretty loud at first, but once you got used to them, they would likely help you communicate more easily. Programming is key--the audiologist can adjust them to fit your needs.

Thank you for your service to our country. My dad's mother's family is all from Philly. Ounans and Dinans--Irish folk. Several of them also served in the military, and we lost a few great guys. My grandmother's cousins. Anyway, thanks for what you have done to keep us free.
Avatar universal
I fear it might be the stroke that affected the left hearing since it has severely affected my left vision.

Can't say for sure if that is the case (nothing to compare against) but even if the left couldn't be helped I think I could get a hearing aid for the right ear and hear much better.
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