Help for Hearing and Balance Problems

Q&A - Ask the Doctor

Audiologists explain the latest tests and treatments for hearing and balance problems

At Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH), people of all ages can be evaluated and treated for hearing and balance problems. Anita Bhandarkar, AuD, CCC-A, Senior Audiologist, and Victoria Andre, AuD, CCC-A, Clinical Audiologist, discuss the specialized tests and therapies that benefit patients.

Victoria Andre, AuD, CCC-A
Victoria Andre, AuD, CCC-A
Anita Bhandarkar, AuD, CCC-A
Anita Bhandarkar, AuD, CCC-A

What audiology services do you offer?

We provide hearing testing for newborns, adults, and geriatric patients; evaluations for vestibular, or balance, disorders; and assessments for auditory processing problems, which can affect children. We also offer hearing aids and cochlear implants.

What tests do you perform for vestibular disorders?

We offer many tests to diagnose common causes of dizziness, such as benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, Meniere’s disease and vestibular weakness, which are inner ear disorders.

In recent years, we’ve started using specialized tests, such as cervical and ocular Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potential tests, which can be used to rule out the presence of a rare inner ear condition. In addition, we offer newer tests like video head impulse testing, which helps us understand how well a person’s vestibular system is functioning.

We also use Computerized Dynamic Posturography to assess sensory and motor control. Based on the results, we can recommend vestibular therapy or further evaluation or refer a patient back to his or her physician.

Who is eligible for cochlear implants?

Cochlear implants are surgically placed devices that are used to electrically stimulate the auditory nerve in patients with significant hearing loss who don’t benefit from hearing aids. Until recently, only people who were profoundly deaf were eligible to receive an implant—and they could only have one.

Today, individuals can receive two cochlear implants, and babies as young as nine months can undergo implantation if their hearing loss is profound.

Children may be eligible for an implant if their hearing loss is severe to profound, and adults can qualify if their hearing loss is moderate to profound and they don’t benefit from hearing aids. Adults who are profoundly deaf in just one ear may also be eligible.

What sets your practice apart from others in the area?

Our licensed Doctors of Audiology provide compassionate care for hearing and balance problems. We offer a wide range of specialized evaluations and treatment options under one roof. In addition, we allow patients to decide which manufacturer’s product, such as hearing aids and cochlear implants, best suits their needs.

We also take a multidisciplinary approach to care. We work very closely with ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialists and, when needed, speech therapists, geneticists, psychologists, and nurses to ensure comprehensive care.

Learn more about audiology services at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital.