The Audiology Condition

Featured image for “The Final Word of Shingles — Differential Diagnosis and Odds and Ends”
Aug. 22, 2017

The Final Word of Shingles — Differential Diagnosis and Odds and Ends

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
Shingles in and around the ear and face is awful.  This post series has belabored the pain and agony problem enough.  The other big problem, the subject of this final post on the topic, is that it’s often very hard to diagnose and differentiate from other disease processes, especially in older patients.  Here’s where the last post left off: …
Featured image for “Ramsay-Hunt, Bell’s Palsy, Herpes Zoster Oticus: How Do You Tell Them Apart?”
Aug. 08, 2017

Ramsay-Hunt, Bell’s Palsy, Herpes Zoster Oticus: How Do You Tell Them Apart?

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
This is the next chapter in a multi-part Shingles series originally prompted by an obscure link to Red Ear Syndrome.  That link lead to posts on shingles in general, shingles in the ear, and the specifically-named Ramsay-Hunt Syndrome Type 2 (RHS/2) . RHS/2 is a horribly painful condition in which the herpes zoster in the geniculate ganglion reactivates and manifests in any number
Featured image for “Ramsay Hunt:  A Focused Attack on the Ear, Hearing and Balance”
Jul. 25, 2017

Ramsay Hunt: A Focused Attack on the Ear, Hearing and Balance

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
Today’s post continues a Shingles series that started with an obscure link to Red Ear Syndrome.  That link lead to posts on shingles in general and shingles in the ear.  The latter co-mingles with the specifically-named Ramsey-Hunt syndrome, pictured horrifically above, the subject of the next several posts in this series.     RHS is a Confusing Bundle of Syndromes   Despite
Featured image for “Shingles in the Auditory System, Part 2”
Jul. 11, 2017

Shingles in the Auditory System, Part 2

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
Previous posts have talked about collisions and traffic jams in and around the tiny tunnel that hooks the inner ear to the brain via the auditory (vestibulocochlear) nerve.  Anything that interferes with that anatomy can cause unilateral hearing loss and other balance or hearing conditions.   Besides benign tumors pressing on the nerve, we’ve described vascular loops. Today is the
Featured image for “Shingles – The Sleeping Monster”
Jun. 27, 2017

Shingles – The Sleeping Monster

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
Some readers may be surprised at today’s topic and wonder what shingles has to do with hearing loss or balance problems.   Shingles is a huge topic on its own, not to mention how it affects hearing and balance. Today’s post is a Q&A overview.  Future posts will be more specific about shingles, hearing, and balance problems. What are Shingles? Shingles,
Featured image for “RES and Shingles”
Jun. 13, 2017

RES and Shingles

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
Red Ear Syndrome (RES) was the subject of a recent post in this section.  RES can be painfully debilitating in some people, while other people experience it as painless and more a curiosity than a problem. It may be under-diagnosed because people either don’t report it to their health care providers or the providers are unfamiliar with the syndrome.  It
Featured image for “A Young Person’s Guide to Earwax”
Jun. 06, 2017

A Young Person’s Guide to Earwax

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
Guest contributor Mary Josebelle Alusin takes readers on a personal ear wax journey.   Growing up with my mom for 27 years has made me witness how consistent she is in taking out the earwax from her ears. It actually has become a habit since she cleans them  after taking a bath EVERY DAY using cotton swabs. I have been telling her
Featured image for “Vascular Loops and Unilateral Hearing Loss”
May. 30, 2017

Vascular Loops and Unilateral Hearing Loss

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
Last August, a post in this section described unusual findings in a patient with unilateral sensorineural hearing loss and retrocochlear findings who was referred for MRI to rule out acoustic neuroma. An acoustic neuroma is a benign, small, slow-growing tumor on the VIII cranial nerve–technically called a vestibular schwannoma.   The MRI found no evidence of a tumor but surprisingly identified
Featured image for “The Ear is Hooked Up to the Brain”
May. 16, 2017

The Ear is Hooked Up to the Brain

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
This post is about how the auditory nerve (cranial nerve VIII, officially called vestibulocochlear CNVIII) hooks up our inner ears to our brains and things that go wrong at the point of hook up.  For example, vascular loops inveigle themselves into the hook up intersection, causing traffic jams which interrupt the flow of hearing to the brain.  Shingles is another source of traffic disruption
Featured image for “Hearing Aid Battery Technology Advances and Cautions”
May. 02, 2017

Hearing Aid Battery Technology Advances and Cautions

Hearing Health & Technology Matters
For years, dispensing audiologists have been cautioning patients and parents to take care around hearing aid batteries.  The threat of accidentally ingesting a battery was a real one and posed significant danger when batteries contained mercury.  The caution was codified in the FDA hearing aid information booklet that is still part of every hearing aid dispensing transaction and is required