Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) Evaluation

Monkey Mouths is excited to offer Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) evaluations to our audiology services. ABR is most often recommended for babies who do not pass their hearing screen at birth. The goal of universal newborn hearing screening is to identify issues early so intervention can be started as soon as possible. When a baby is referred for further testing after their initial newborn hearing screen, it is important that follow-up testing is performed in a timely manner. While ABR testing is often performed on infants and small children, it is also recommended for those who cannot cooperate with routine hearing testing in a sound booth.  Your child’s hearing is important to us.  Our goal is to be able to schedule your child’s ABR within two weeks of your call to schedule.

Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) Evaluation

What is an ABR evaluation?

An Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) evaluation is a safe, painless, and noninvasive test that can measure how well each ear responds to sounds. This type of testing can also tell how well the hearing nerve sends the information to the brain.

When is an ABR recommended?

An ABR is most often recommended for babies who do not pass their hearing screen at birth. However, there are other reasons why an ABR may be recommended, such as if a child has a speech-/language delay, developmental delay, a diagnosis that is associated with hearing differences, recurrent ear infections, or if there is concern for hearing by parent/caregiver. Infants under six months old can complete the test without sedation while the child is in a natural sleep state. Most children over the age of six months require some form of sedation to sleep through an ABR.

How should a caregiver prepare before the test?

For this test, the participant will need to be asleep, as movement and noise can affect responses. The following are recommendations for a successful test:

  • Infants should not sleep for one to two hours before the test.
  • If possible, delay feeding an infant until you arrive for the appointment.
  • Bring a comfort item, such as a blanket or pillow.
  • Bring extra necessities including diapers and wipes, a change of clothes and extra formula, if used.

What happens during the test?

Evaluations take up to two hours from start to finish. During the test, the baby will need to be sleeping. This can take place in a parent/caregiver’s arms or in their car seat. To get started, the audiologist will gently scrub the child’s forehead and behind their ear. Small sticker sensors that will transmit a signal to the computer are then attached at those locations. Next, tiny earphones will be placed in the child’s ears. A sound will be played through the earphones and the sensors will pick up the brain’s response to those sounds. After the test, the audiologist will analyze the recordings to determine how the child hears and then share the results with the parent or caregiver.

New to Monkey Mouths?

Call us at (817) 479-7019, ext. 6, to schedule an evaluation, where an audiologist determines whether your child would benefit from services.

“Friendly staff and environment. My son felt relaxed and I loved the expertise of the staff members in the audiology department.”

Curious if Monkey Mouths is the right fit for your child’s needs?