Everyday Audiology: A Practical Guide for Health Care Professionals

Everyday Audiology: A Practical Guide for Health Care Professionals

RATING: (3 of 5 ears)
EDITOR: Kazunari J. Koike
PUBLISHER: Plural Publishing, Inc.
ISBN: 978-1-59756-088-7 (softcover)
COST: $45.00

REVIEWER: Bruce M. Edwards, AuD, Assistant Director, Audiology & Electrophysiology, University of Michigan Hospitals & Health Centers, Ann Arbor.

SYNOPSIS: Everyday Audiology: A Practical Guide for Health Care Professionals is a new textbook drawn out of lectures given by staff audiologists to otolaryngology residents at the West Virginia University School of Medicine where the author, Kazunari J. Koike, Ph.D., has served as Director of Audiology and Professor of Otolaryngology since 1989. The textbook is divided into four parts including Evaluation of Hearing Disorders, Evaluation of Balance Disorders, Rehabilitation of Hearing Disorders, and References and Notes. A variety of routinely used clinical measures (“everyday audiology”) are succinctly described and accompanied by figures or tables that contribute to the learning experience. This is a most worthy effort designed by Dr. Koike to help one quickly acquire an understanding of hearing and balance test measures and results. Also offered is information regarding pediatric speech/language/hearing milestones, hearing aids and assistive listening devices, cochlear implants, and communication methods for patients with hearing loss. Associated CPT codes accompany many of the test descriptions.

REVIEW: In Part I, Evaluation of Hearing Disorders, one will find a concise description of important concepts like hearing level, masking, acoustic reflex patterns, tests for patients who are suspected of malingering, and auditory electrophysiology among others. It appropriately constitutes about one-half of the text’s material concerned with clinical test concepts and would serve very nicely for didactic instruction as each narrative is accompanied by a corroborative picture, graph or table. Part II, Evaluation of Balance Disorders concerns itself with the components of electronystagmography such as saccade and pursuit testing, calorics, etc. Rotational chair, posturography, and other measures including vestibular evoked myogenic potentials are similarly and concisely described and supported with pictures. Part III, Rehabilitation of Hearing Disorders discusses hearing aid evaluation, ear-level amplification, cochlear implants, and various methods of auditory rehabilitation. Part IV, References and Notes supplements the preceding information.

CRITIQUE: Everyday Audiology is a text that could facilitate the self-directed learning of medical school students, otolaryngology residents and undergraduate students with aspirations of audiologic careers. It would also work well as a practical tool for those who teach in medical schools, training institutions and affiliated settings. This reviewer finds much to recommend in that the author has achieved his stated goal of accurately presenting complex matter regarding selected bedrock clinical concepts to readers with limited basic knowledge of the subject material and little dedicated time for audiology education. Everyday Audiology might benefit from more information regarding Bone Anchored Hearing Aids and the audiologist’s role in the provision of this service. For this reviewer’s experience, it is a burgeoning area of otologic practice and thus one of great interest to otolaryngology residents as well. Similarly, a brief description of cochlear implant activation, mapping, etc. would serve as a complement to the material provided about those devices. Finally, several figures in the areas concerned with electrophysiology might be a bit confusing for the novice reader. For example, Figure 14 (“Elevated SP/AP ratio…”) portrays two separate electrocochleography/auditory brainstem responses per ear that do not replicate well. The stated educational goal might be better served by traces that illustrate more-replicable results. These criticisms should not overly concern anyone contemplating the acquisition of Everyday Audiology, however. This reviewer intends to employ his copy often for instruction of otolaryngology residents and audiology graduate students and recommends it enthusiastically to others.