Presbycusis physical examination

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1], Farman Khan, MD, MRCP [2]


The physical examination is usually normal with exception of cerumen which is a common problem in elderly people and a frequent cause of hearing loss and hearing aid malfunction.[1] The physical examination includes otoscopy, whispered ear test and tuning forks for the assessment of hearing loss. The physical examination of the outer ears is usually normal in presbycusis. The otoscopic examination is helpful for finding other potential causes of hearing loss such as cerumen impaction, tympanic membrane perforation, infection or tumors.


  1. Gates GA, Mills JH (2005). "Presbycusis". Lancet. 366 (9491): 1111–20. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(05)67423-5. PMID 16182900.