Well, I finally had the summation of “test” results today. It basically amounts to: “You’re profoundly deaf”
NO?!?? REALLY??? Holy shiznit! I never knew THAT!
All kidding aside… I had a CAT scan done, a plain vanilla hearing test and an ENG test (inner ear test). The hearing tests shows my hearing is quite bad, the inner ear test shows my inner ear is fairly normal, but the CAT scan shows a mildly deviated septum… which apparently makes it more likely that when I get a bad cold, it’s worse on the left side.
The left side, which still rings at eyeball rattling volume if I wear my left hearing aid and am exposed to noise (like my own voice).It was interesting looking at a CAT scan of my skull and seeing a left slanted swirl in my head. It looks like a fossil or something.
I was shown the back of my own sinuses (with a small mirror and a flashlight), and they were inflamed and red. Apparently, that sinus infection and ear infection I had in October was a real humdinger… and still is. Not really an infection anymore, but merely inflamed. Bad enough that my hearing has been further damaged. Apparently now, I might be lucky to hear a jet engine.
The Doctor’s reaction was unfortunately, normal. He showed me the charts and basically said “I don’t need to say much.. it goes right off the chart.” Yeah, we knew that part… in either case, he suspects the ringing is a symptom of my hearing being further damaged. He stated there wasn’t much he could do for me… (drat) His reaction included stating that he was amazed that I “do as well as you do”. I’ve gotten a lot of that over the years, and it still kind of weirds me out. It’s funny because, hey, this is the only way I know HOW to hear. I explained I probably do so well because of training from Oakland Schools when I was a kid.
His suggestion was the make sure I keep my sinuses clear (Note to self: Buy Claritin stock NOW!) and to take a vitamin several times a day called Lipo-Flavonoid, which is apparently designed to promote improved circulation in the inner ear. Unfortunately, best results are reached after 6 months of use.
Therefore, I’m realistically looking right down the barrel of hearing in only my right ear for the near future. If I’m lucky, it works. He said it works maybe 60% of the time…
On the plus side, there was no “worst case scenario”. There’s no tumors, or anything like that. Maybe that was just in my own mind, but I tend to look at the worst case scenario in things like this and work my way backwards. I suppose this outcome is kind of right in the middle because I didn’t find out ANYTHING that I didn’t already know except for the deviated septum part.
There was no discussion of Cochlear Implants. I don’t know why. Maybe I’m too old now. If it lasts till March, I’m going to have to talk with him about it…