Tuesday, June 24, 2008


I have been so excited to come back and post this, but of course had to take care of my kids first! Imagine that! Anyway, we had an audiologist appt. today, one that I really thought was to meet our new audi and check Aiden's hearing aids. So when I got there I was shocked and so excited to hear we were going in the sound proof room - a.k.a. the "booth test"!

This test watches for behavioral reactions to sounds (for ex. any eye movement, starting/stopping sucking, head turns) with his hearing aids on vs. the ABR (which measures auditory brain response) without hearing aids. All I could pray was, "Please let them see some sort of reaction ... please God please!"

Let me just tell you, you are in this little room with padded gray walls and two huge speakers on each side. They gave me earplugs, which I asked if I really needed to wear and they said yes. I was too excited to realize I was nervous. I was trying not to get my hopes up knowing that Aiden's ABR showed no response at 110 dB - which is about at the loudness of a jet engine!

Aiden was hungry, but we held him off and gave him his binky. Then the voice came over the loud speakers ... and then louder ... and louder. It was just our audi calling his name "Aaaaaiden .... Aaaaaaiden", then "bop, bop, bop", and just casual talking to him. And we watched ... and the binky stopped ... and then moved real fast - the same reactions we see at home when we talk to him within his bubble, with hearing aids. At first I just blew it off, trying to think nothing of it.

When we were through, our audi came in and told me she saw responses too (the binky business) at 75 dB and 80dB, but none at 70dB (he just kept sucking on his binky...no stopping or fast fluttering of it). We also tested him without hearing aids, which again, no "binky" responses at any level.

I started to cry ... a bitter happy moment ... I was so happy that my baby showed some sort of reaction, yet was reminded once again my baby is deaf! I know the test is not 100%, but this gives us some hope his auditory nerve is there ... it tells me his hearing aids are working - even if it's just a little bit - HE IS GETTING SOMETHING! I'm so emotional over this behavior booth test, I can't imagine the day my binky boy gets his implants!

Now, just because Aiden showed response to some sound does not mean he can hear. He may have heard a loooong noise vs. a short noise, but still would not be able to distinguish what is being heard. Aiden is still deaf. Aiden will not be able to hear the sounds of speech without cochlear implants.

I included a picture of the speech banana below. The speech banana shows the conversational sounds of speech and at which dB and frequency level the sound is at (deaf/hoh can usually hear lower frequency sounds than higher frequency). If you can't hear the sounds of speech, it's very hard to reproduce them correctly. So with Aiden possibly hearing sounds at 75dB, with hearing aids, still does not even put him within the speech banana to hear speech sounds, BUT, to me, his mom, HE IS HEARING SOMETHING and that means so much!

To learn more about the speech banana and audiogram go here and here.


Val said...

awww, my son heard pretty good w/his aids until age three. He never heard very clear crisp sound nor did he hear everything but his aided audiogram looked much like Aiden's sounds now when he turned three. He would lie in the floor all day w/his aid stuck to the speaker of his LOUD toy firetruck. He would walk by the tv, craving some type of sound and stick his aids up to the speaker of the tv. Luckily at three and a half he was successfully implanted.

leahlefler said...

That's great news about his aided hearing- his auditory nerve is getting stimulated while you wait for his CI!

Mom to Toes said...

Oh, this is such wonderful news!!! I bet that was a really beautiful moment when he showed reactions.

I am so happy for him and your whole family!

Cattle said...

That is awsome!


Bill and Shelly said...

That is wonderful news. Any little bit of stimulation will help before he gets his CI.

Ben's Mom said...

Congratulations - that is great news. Ben had a similar reaction last week at a booth test - at least the audiologist says she saw one. You are doing great.. good luck with the journey. I will be in touch.

Loudest Mom said...

Way to go Aiden!!! I think everything went fantastic :) Just take thing one step at a time and all will be well..... (a reminder to myself as well :)

Laurie said...

Wow, I'm amazed that babies can be tested like this. I, too, have a profound hearing loss and was able to hear some with my aids. Enough to know that there was sound, that someone was talking to me and the dog barking, etc.

Looking forward to more updates! Aiden looks so precious!

Lucas'Mommy said...

How exciting! I remember when the audiologist found hearing in Lucas' right ear at a middle frequency at 90 db. I cried like a baby, even though it's not particulary excellent news. Everything becomes relative. I'm still anxiously awaiting his MRI results. I was reading about Aiden starting to giggle, and it reminds me of when Lucas started to giggle. It almost makes you forget that all of this stuff is going on. I look forward to sharing that Dutch beer with you someday soon.