On–The–Ear (OTE)/Open Ear Hearing Aid — A more recently developed style of a BTE hearing aid that utilizes a thinner tubing and a placement of the electronics lower down behind the ear for better cosmetic appeal with less occlusion.
Otitis Media — Inflammation of the middle ear caused by infection.
Otoacoustic Emissions — Low-intensity sounds produced by the inner ear that can be quickly measured with a sensitive microphone placed in the ear canal in individuals with normal hearing. Often used to screen the hearing of infants.
Otolaryngologist — Physician/surgeon who specializes in diseases of the ears, nose, throat, and head and neck.
Oral Interpreter — The interpreter silently mouths the words of the speaker so they are visible on the lips. Used when the person with hearing loss uses speechreading to understand the conversation.
Otologist/Neurotologist — An otologist/neurotologist is a board certified otolaryngologist who provides medical and surgical care of patients, both adult and pediatric, with diseases that affect the ears, balance system, temporal bone, skull base, and related structures of the head and neck. The neurotologist is knowledgeable of the basic sciences of hearing, balance, nerve function, infectious disease and anatomy of the head and neck. Their diagnostic, medical, and surgical skills include treatment of hearing loss and tinnitus, dizziness, infectious and inflammatory diseases of the ear, facial nerve disorders, congenital malformations of the ear, and tumors of the ear, hearing nerve, and skull base. As part of a team with neurosurgeons, they manage diseases and disorders of the cranial nerves and skull base.
Otosclerosis — Abnormal growth of bone around the ossicles and the inner ear. This bone prevents structures within the ear from working properly and causes hearing loss. For some people with otosclerosis, the hearing loss may become severe, but often the hearing can be improved by surgery or hearing aids.
Ototoxic Drugs — Drugs that can damage the hearing and balance organs located in the inner ear.
Otoscope — A magnifying and lighting tool utilized by healthcare workers to look into the ear canal.
Outer Ear — External portion of the ear, consisting of the pinna, or auricle, and the ear canal.
Otolaryngologist — An Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) physician.
Postlingually Deafened — Individual who becomes deaf after having acquired language.
Prelingually Deafened — Persons either born deaf or who lost his or her hearing early in childhood, before acquiring language.
Presbycusis — Loss of hearing that gradually occurs because of changes in the inner or middle ear in individuals as they grow older. The type of hearing loss often associated with presbycusis is a sensorineural hearing loss. Learn more about aging and hearing loss.
Profound Hearing Loss — A hearing loss ranging between 91 and 120 dB. This is essentially a total hearing loss.
Pure Tone Audiometry — Refers to the part of a complete hearing evaluation that includes the measuring of air-conduction and bone-conduction thresholds while using non-complex (pure) tones.