July, 2012  

Probes & Tips header

New Staff?

Screeners checking equipment(2)  

 If you have new staff who need to learn about your OAE screening practices, remember to share our Kidshearing.org website with them.



 In particular, have them view the introductory webinar followed by the training videos.  


Screeners checking equipment


Then, spend some time screening with them as they develop their screening skills. 




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Find more helpful hints from previous issues of


Probes and Tips 


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Tip of the Month
Improve Probe Fit

Follow the steps below to achieve a good probe fit that will allow you to administer a fast and accurate otoacoustic emissions (OAE) hearing screening test: 

Check Probe - Make sure that the probe nozzleProbe nozzle is clean and the opening is not clogged.  If necessary, wipe with a slightly damp cloth.  Do not use liquids or get moisture in the probe. Make sure that the probe nozzle is seated firmly on the probe.


Clip Cord - Clip the probe cord to the back of the child's shirt to take the weight off from the probe and keep it from pulling out of the child's ear.


Select Correct Size Probe Tip Cover - Examine theExamine Ear size of the ear canal opening and select a disposable tip that looks slightly larger. This will help you to achieve a tight seal that ensures that an accurate signal is sent into the ear while helping to block out background/environmental noise.  


Place Tip Cover on Probe - Push the proFoam Tipbe tip cover all the way down on the probe nozzle so that there is no gap between the base of the probe and the probe tip. When using a foam tip, which is often the best for screening young children, compress it before inserting it into the ear canal.


Open Ear Canal and Insert Probe Firmly - With one hand, grasp the edge of the ear and pull back and down slightly to fully open the ear canal while inserProbe Insertionting the probe with the other hand. Use firm pressure while giving the probe a quarter turn. This creates a slight downward twisting motion, helping you to insert the probe far enough into the canal to obtain a tight seal. Remember, the probe and tips are designed so that they will not hurt the child's ears. Release the ear after you insert the probe, letting the canal close snugly around the probe.


Release the Probe - Never attempt to hold the probe while you are administering the screening test. If the probe does not stay firmly in place, you may need to use a larger size tip.  Holding the probe in the cProbe seated in ear canalhild's ear may unintentionally push it against the wall of the ear canal, preventing the signal from getting through or it may unintentionally create slight movement which can interfere with testing.

If the probe is placed properly in the ear, it should stay in place by itself while you run the screening test.

Probe of the Month

Are you able to achieve a good probe fit so that the probe stays securely in the child's ear canal during screening?  If you have questions or comments, submit them to us at:




And, as always, share www.KidsHearing.org with anyone you think would benefit from our resources.     

 ECHO - Headstart

Probes and Tips is a newsletter from the ECHO Initiative that provides monthly TIPS

to enhance early childhood hearing screening and follow-up practices and PROBES

 about current activities so we can learn from one another's successes and challenges.