Tucson ENT was established in 1987 by a core group of the community’s outstanding otolaryngologists. Our dynamic practice has evolved and flourished, now employing eight exceptional physicians, four audiologists and over 40 staff members in two convenient locations.
Just as our practice has board certified physicians who provide comprehensive care for all areas of ear, nose and throat care, our audiologists have unique skills that allow our practice to meet the diverse needs of individuals seeking care for their hearing and balance problems.
Stephanie Navarrete, AuD
Stephanie has been with Tucson ENT for more than 25 years and is the director of the Audiology Department. She received her master’s degree from the University of Colorado and her Au.D. from Salus University. She is a member of AAA and holds an Arizona Audiologist Dispensing license. Stephanie is particularly interested in working with cochlear implant patients and has extensive experience with digital hearing aids. She enjoys sharing her expertise and knowledge with mentees from the University of Arizona. Stephanie is an Arizona native and mother of two. She enjoys traveling and supporting the University of Arizona basketball team.
Abel Smith, AuD
Abel has been practicing audiology at Tucson ENT for more than 15 years. He was locally trained and educated at the University of Arizona. Abel is a AAA fellow and holds a Dispensing Audiologist license in Arizona. His interests include electrophysiologic testing, vestibular testing and hearing amplification technologies. He enjoys the variety and challenges of working with all age groups in this multi-disciplinary setting. Abel is a mentor to graduate student clinicians from the University of Arizona’s Audiology Program. When he’s not working, he spends time with family, in the garden or exploring the mountains of Southern Arizona.
Sarah Laszok, AuD
Sarah received her Au.D. degree from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2015 and joined Tucson ENT after graduation. Sarah is a member of ASHA and has her Arizona State Hearing Aid Dispensing License. She enjoys the diverse clinical environment at Tucson ENT and working with cochlear implant patients and families. Sarah is affiliated with the University of Arizona supervising students during semester-long clinical rotations and enjoys mentoring future audiologists. In her free time, you can find Sarah at the gym, visiting with family and friends or out exploring the world.
Christine Francart, AuD
Christine received her Doctor of Audiology (AuD) from Ohio University in 2016 and joined Tucson Ear, Nose and Throat in 2017. Christine has her Arizona State Hearing Aid Dispensing License and is a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and the American Academy of Audiology (AAA). She enjoys the friendly staff and the variety of patients at Tucson ENT.
Christine comes from a Navy family and loves traveling. She also enjoys spending time with her two rescued dogs, watching movies and hiking in her free time.
Karla Navarro, AuD
Karla completed the Au.D. and Bilingual Certificate Programs at the University of Arizona in May of 2019. Karla is licensed to dispense hearing aids in the State of Arizona and is a member of ASHA and AAA. Prior to officially joining the audiology team at Tucson ENT, she familiarized herself with the providers and patient population while completing a six-month externship. Karla is a bilingual Spanish-English provider who enjoys the diverse patient population and dynamic clinical environment offered at Tucson ENT. In particular, she enjoys mapping cochlear implants and evaluating pediatric patients. Karla likes bonding with family, friends and her dogs, as well as exercising, traveling, and spending time outdoors.
What Is an Audiologist?
Have you ever wondered what exactly an audiologist does, besides look inside your ears with a lighted instrument? If you have been diagnosed with hearing loss, you’ll want to learn as much as you can about this professional who will be intimately involved in helping you come up with a solution that allows you to communicate more effectively.
An audiologist is a professional who specializes in the diagnosis, evaluation and treatment of hearing and balance disorders. Most have earned an Au.D. (Doctor of Audiology) while others have received a master’s degree from an accredited university, where they received extensive training in the prevention, identification, assessment and non-medical treatment of hearing and balance disorders. They have to complete an internship, pass a national competency examination and obtain professional certification and licensure in the state(s) where they practice.
Audiologists work with patients of all ages, treating infants, children and adults for a variety of hearing and balance problems. They work in diverse settings like hospitals, schools, clinics, universities, private practices, VA hospitals, hearing aid dispensaries and otolaryngology (ENT) offices. Audiologists are responsible for services such as:
- Fitting and dispensing hearing aids
- Administering hearing and balance tests
- Assessing candidacy for and programming implantable hearing devices (e.g., cochlear implants, bone anchored hearing aids, etc.)
- Counseling patients and their families on communication strategies
- Designing and implementing hearing conservation programs and newborn hearing screenings
- Providing aural rehabilitation programs
- Performing ear-related surgical monitoring
All in all, audiologists are the most qualified individuals to help you manage your hearing loss or balance disorder, and they provide an unparalleled breadth of care.
Call Tucson ENT Audiology at (520) 777-0495 for more information or to schedule an appointment.