Auditory brainstem response test. An automated test for hearing and brain (neurological) functioning that is performed by applying wires to the skin around the ear. ABR may be used in the evaluation of: Hearing integrity (and neurologic normalcy) in infants and young children. Neurologic integrity (and hearing) in patients who are comatose, unresponsive, or impaired due to a stroke, an acoustic neuroma (tumor on the hearing nerve), Ménière's disease, etc. The ABR test involves attaching electrodes to the head to record electrical activity from the auditory nerve (the hearing nerve) and other parts of the brain. Also known as brainstem auditory evoked potentials (BAEP).