What is Brainstem Evoked Response Audiometry (BERA)?
Brainstem Evoked Response Audiometry (BERA) is a test measuring responses in the brain waves that are stimulated by a clicking sound to check the central auditory pathways(hearing) of the brainstem.
What are the indications for performing a BERA?
The indications are as follows:
- Nervous system abnormalities
- Children with hearing loss
- To assess neurological functions
- Malingering patients
- Suspected acoustic neuroma
- Central pontine myelinolysis
What is the procedure for performing BERA?
The procedure is as follows:
- Patient is asked to wash the hair the night before the test
- Patient is made to sleep on a reclining chair
- Electrodes are placed on the patient’s scalp, along the vertex and on each earlobe
- Earphones are put on the ear. The patient hears a clicking sound or tone bursts through the earphones
- The electrodes pick up the brain’s response and record it on the graph.
How is BERA result interpreted?
Interpretation of Brainstem Evoked Response Audiometry (BERA) involves a series of five individual waves that are recorded. These waves arise from:
- Lip, tongue, salivary glands, gums and other oral cavity tissues such as the inner lining of the cheeks
- Cochlear nerve
- Cochlear nucleus
- Superior olivary nucleus
- Lateral leminiscus
- Inferior colliculus
The morphology and amplitude of the wave forms are measured. This test has minimal discomfort and there are no risks involved.
Abnormal test results are indicative of:
- Hearing loss
- Multiple sclerosis
- Cerebrovascular accidents (stroke)