Hyperacusis is the reduced tolerance and increased sensitivity to sounds. Normal everyday sounds may seem too loud and volume is perceived as being too high and sometimes painful. This can greatly affect the quality of life for patients who experience hyperacusis. In severe cases, patients may even develop a fear of noise due to their increased sensitivity and as a result they may avoid social and public situations. In many cases, hyperacusis is also accompanied by tinnitus and in some cases may be associated with vertigo.
Many people experience sensitivity to sound, but true hyperacusis is rare. Hyperacusis can affect people of all ages and may impact one or both ears. Some causes of hyperacusis include: head injury, ototoxicity, viral infections involving the inner or 8th nerve, and many other causes. There are a variety of neurologic conditions that may be associated with hyperacusis, including: Post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic fatigue syndrome, migraine headaches, depression, and others.
To evaluate hyperacusis, our audiologists will conduct a thorough case history concerning your symptoms and perform a comprehensive audiologic evaluation that includes pure tone testing (air and bone conduction), speech audiometry, word recognition testing, acoustic reflexes and tympanometry. Our audiologists will counsel you on your hearing loss and review treatment options.
Why Choose Us
- Dr. Abraham Jacob, Medical Director for Ear & Hearing (E&H) at the Center for Neurosciences (CNS), is fellowship trained in Otology, Neurotology, and Cranial Base Surgery. He is the first and most experienced Neurotologist recruited to Southern Arizona.
- Dr. Jacob was a founding member of the University of Arizona (UA) Department of Otolaryngology prior to his departure and transition to CNS. At UA, he was Vice Chair of ENT and held the rank of full Professor with Tenure. He was also founding Director of the UA Ear Institute.
- Dr. Jacob transitioned his practice to the Center for Neurosciences in early 2017 as he felt that the new environment helped to optimize delivery of personalized ear and lateral skull base care.
- Surgery designed to improve/restore hearing may be an option for some disease states, and an Otologist/Neurotologist like Dr. Jacob performing the procedure optimizes results. His specific training and experience in ear surgery – implantable hearing technologies, ear drum/ear canal reconstructions and manipulation of the ossicular chain (hearing bones) – minimizes complications and maximizes benefit. A full array of aural rehabilitation technologies is also offered, including state-of-the-art hearing aids for those electing to forego surgery.
- Our highly-skilled Doctors of Audiology, Stephanie Bourn, AuD, CCC-A and Mary Rose Goldstein, AuD, CCC-A, strive to provide you with accurate information regarding your hearing status, promote understanding of your hearing and communication needs, increase your knowledge of evidence-based management and/or treatment options, and introduce you to the hearing health tools that can maximize your quality of life reducing the negative impact of hearing disorders.