Saturday, April 2, 2011

Test Numero Uno

So yesterday was the first of my medical tests.  It was mostly an indepth hearing test, since I haven't had one in about five years, and then this really cool space age thing where I got to wear Star War goggles and stare at smiley faces.  There was lots of talking beforehand - all about ME! - where I got to answer questions about family history of hearing loss, yada yada blah blah blah.  Then the hearing test, same-o same-o.  My personal favorite is the "repeat the word after me".   Hello, I've been doing this test for at least 35 years.  You should change the words.  I can tell you the words before you say them.  Here goes:  baseball, seashore, toothbrush, railroad...  I got a 92%, and that's just because I dozed off for a minute there.  Well, I must admit, she did change the list the second time around and it was way hard because the words were one syllable.  Then you can't tell if she said go or goat or goes. 

My bad news?  My "good" ear is now my "bad" ear.  My hearing loss has progressed more.  My overall threshold has gone from a 70db loss to almost 80db.  Sucks eggs, I tell you.  The good news?  I have among the best deciphering skills she's ever seen.  As long as I'm in a quiet room with no background noise, and I have volume increase (aids) my loss in virtually undetectable.  Throw in background  noise and it's all out the window.  All my life I've been told I have nerve deafness, and actually I have the exact opposite.  My cochlea is shot all to you-know-where, but my nerve is perfect. Nice to know.

The next test involved the goggles and some crazy stuff.  First it was just following the dot with my eyes while the computer (Windows 98 of all things!) tracked my eye movement, then I got to lay down while she covered the goggles so I was in the dark and shot my ears with cold air at the speed of a tornado to see if I would get dizzy. Ya think?  I'm fairly sure the table I was laying on was in lift off mode while she kept repeating, "I promise you're not moving." and I kept calling her names in my mind.  Maybe a few were verbal. Not sure. She smacked me once, so that may be why. She did each ear twice, so see if I would go in different directions. I think she graduated from the Acadamy of American Sadism with honors. Afterward, she assured me I did well, but didn't offer me a sticker, and I know she had them because I saw them when I first came in.  They had Buzz Lightyear too.

Diagnosis:  hearing loss.

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