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Tympanometry

Purpose

tympan test Image

Assesses the status of the middle ear system. Appropriate for age 4 months through adulthood.

Procedure
A probe tone is introduced into the ear. The amount of sound reflected by the tympanic membrane is measured by a probe in the ear canal as the pressure in the ear canal is varied.

Results
Provides information about the status of the tympanic membrane and middle ear system (i.e., effusion, negative pressure).

Sample test results

Tympanometry Sample Test Result

Limitations
Specialized equipment is required for accurate assessment of infants under 4 months of age.

Resources
Grason-Stadler, Inc. Tympanometry in Just Seconds.

Palmu, A., Puhakka, H., Rahko, T., & Takala, A. K. (1999). Diagnostic value of tympanometry in infants in clinical practice. International Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology, 49(3), 207-13.

Shanks, J., & Shelton, C. (1991). Basic principles and clinical applications of tympanometry. Otolaryngologic Clinics of North America, 24(2), 299-328.

Van Balen, F. A., Aarts, A. M., & DeMelker, R. A. (1999). Tympanometry by general practitioners: Reliable? International Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology, 48(2), 117-23.