The test is administered through headphones and the patient is asked to indicate each time he or she hears a sound and in which ear it is heard. Some assessments include speech discrimination using multi-syllable words to determine if a patient hears sufficiently to understand what is being said. A diagnostic audiogram evaluates cochlear or inner ear function and central auditory or brain function related to hearing.
Tympanometry is a test of ear drum functionality by measuring responses to air pressure sweeps within the ear canal. A small probe is placed in the ear to produce a test tone and different pressure levels, recording the responses within the sealed canal.