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Thread: Best solution for unilateral hearing loss

  1. Default Best solution for unilateral hearing loss

    the way I see it there are really just 2 options with option 1 probably being what is assumed to be the best:

    1) phonak spice aid with croslink

    2) a fully functional aid with a hand held fm receiver for dealing with head shadowing and possibly speech in noise.

    Now that many have been using the spice aids for a while, are there people out there using 2 spice aids think that they are a viable option for a person with a unilateral (deaf in one ear) hearing loss? Can somebody try pulling out one of their speakers from one aid to test how the 2 spice aid might perform for a person with a unilateral loss? This could possibly be a third option for an unilateral loss which I posted about a while back
    http://www.hearingaidforums.com/show...4558#post54558

    Anybody tried both option 1 and 2? if so what are the pros and cons?

    anybody actually tried option 3 to fit a unilateral loss?
    Last edited by doubledown; 07-07-2011 at 09:23 PM.
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    1000 Hz L-50 R-95
    2000 Hz L-65 R-110
    4000 Hz L-90 R-100
    8000 Hz L-95 R-100
    Oticon Agil on left ear with power receiver

  2. #2

    Default Unilateral Hearing Loss

    I lost all usable hearing in my right ear and the high frequencies in the left last winter due to a viral infection. I trialed an Oticon Delta, an Oticon Dual and a Phonak Smart V with Bicros. Although I thought that the Dual had the better overall sound quality, I selected the Phonak Bicros because of the head shadow problem with the single aid. I considered a single aid with an FM transmitter. but rejected the idea without a trial because it seemed too cumbersome to deal with a handheld transmitter on a routine basis. I'm not an expert by any means, but cannot see why two conventional aids would be an advantage. Some of the features of the higher end aids would probably not be usable and I would think the cost would be higher. The Pros need to jump in here with real information if I'm wrong in this. Vic
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  3. #3
    DocAudio Guest

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    I would say there is a 3rd and 4th option not mentioned:

    3. A TransEar. It looks very much like a small BTE but the earmold portion rests in the bony portion of the ear canal on the deaf side. It uses bone conduction to transmit the sound to the better side. The ear with normal hearing doesn't have to wear a receiver at all, a unit is only worn on the side without hearing. http://www.transear.com/

    4. This one uses the same principle of bone conduction to transmit the sound from the dead side to the side with normal hearing but it is accomplished via a Bone-Anchored-Hearing-Aid (BAHA) which is not considered a hearing aid at all by insurance standards and may be covered by insurance. It does require surgery. A housing is surgically implanted in the mastoid bone and the BAHA is snapped in/out of this housing. They were initially designed (I believe) for individuals who could not wear a hearing aid (no ear canal, chronically draining ear, etc.) but has been used in more recent years for single-sided deafness. You can try the BAHA by using a headband to see if it is something that would work for you before undergoing any permanent solutions. You can go to this site http://www.cochlearamericas.com/Support/38.asp to find a clinic in your area that is a provider of BAHA devices. I fit 2 of these about 5 years ago and the patients really loved them.

    As for the Phonak CROS system, it can be used with any of the Spice platform HA's, not just the very high-end products. I have fit 3 of these and although they do work marvelously, the battery life is abominable...only 2 days in most cases. For people who have used older CROS/Bi-CROS systems in the past, the switch to the far smaller device with more noise reduction features on it is worth the additional cost in batteries/year...but for some it may not be.

  4. #4

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    I would go with the Phonak Audeo S Smart V with the CROS (don't waste your money on the IX since you lose some features like zoomcontrol while using the CROS). You can balance the mics between the CROS and the Audeo to ensure equal volume coming from both sides. Also, your better ear will benefit from the sound recover. Another thing, the hook that comes with CROS doesn't work too well so ask your audiologist/hearing aid specialist to attach a receiver to it. The CROS will stay in the ear better and be more comfortable.

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DocAudio View Post
    I would say there is a 3rd and 4th option not mentioned:
    Thanks for the tip. didn't realized bone conduction could be used to send sounds to the ear on the opposite side.

    Quote Originally Posted by DocAudio View Post
    As for the Phonak CROS system, it can be used with any of the Spice platform HA's, not just the very high-end products. I have fit 3 of these and although they do work marvelously, the battery life is abominable...only 2 days in most cases. For people who have used older CROS/Bi-CROS systems in the past, the switch to the far smaller device with more noise reduction features on it is worth the additional cost in batteries/year...but for some it may not be.
    Quote Originally Posted by JayCyn View Post
    I would go with the Phonak Audeo S Smart V with the CROS (don't waste your money on the IX since you lose some features like zoomcontrol while using the CROS). You can balance the mics between the CROS and the Audeo to ensure equal volume coming from both sides. Also, your better ear will benefit from the sound recover. Another thing, the hook that comes with CROS doesn't work too well so ask your audiologist/hearing aid specialist to attach a receiver to it. The CROS will stay in the ear better and be more comfortable.
    I believe the general consensus on this board is that the cross link with the a spice aid without the stereozoom or zoom control option is the best bang for buck option. This is because stereozoom and zoom control is not supported by the cross link device so you would be paying for a premium aid with features you would never be able to use.

    But still using 2 spice aids may resolve the battery issue. I believe the big downside is that head shadowing would not be automatically handled but has to be done so manually using zoom control.

    Does anybody know if zoom control will turn off the mic on the aid receiving the sounds from the opposite of the head? or will it combine the sound from the mic along with the sound from the other aid? if it combines the sound then isn't zoom control just like cros link? what if the aid was kept in zoom control at all times?
    0250 Hz L-35 R-100
    0500 Hz L-40 R-100
    1000 Hz L-50 R-95
    2000 Hz L-65 R-110
    4000 Hz L-90 R-100
    8000 Hz L-95 R-100
    Oticon Agil on left ear with power receiver

  6. #6
    DocAudio Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by doubledown View Post
    Thanks for the tip. didn't realized bone conduction could be used to send sounds to the ear on the opposite side.
    Most people don't. Honestly, until a colleague pointed it out to me as an option for single-sided deafness I didn't think of it either.

    Quote Originally Posted by doubledown View Post
    I believe the general consensus on this board is that the cross link with the a spice aid without the stereozoom or zoom control option is the best bang for buck option. This is because stereozoom and zoom control is not supported by the cross link device so you would be paying for a premium aid with features you would never be able to use.
    Yes I would probably avoid the highest technology since the StereoZoom is not an option, there has to be binaural hearing for the StereoZoom to work. The transmitter unit is only that, a transmitter.

    Quote Originally Posted by doubledown View Post
    But still using 2 spice aids may resolve the battery issue. I believe the big downside is that head shadowing would not be automatically handled but has to be done so manually using zoom control.
    The battery will drain with the CROS/Bi-CROS option within 48 hours for the transmitter. If you select an aid with a size 13 battery (traditional BTE or Full-shell ITE) as the receiver/hearing aid then you will get probably 3-4 days, maybe 5 out of the battery. If you select a RIC that matches the transmitter unit then you will still only get about 48 hours.

    I believe the software does take into account some head-shadowing effects, however, you will be hearing everything in your good ear so it will all seem like it's coming from that side, even if it is being transmitted from the poor ear slightly before the good ear hears it on it's own.

    Quote Originally Posted by doubledown View Post
    Does anybody know if zoom control will turn off the mic on the aid receiving the sounds from the opposite of the head? or will it combine the sound from the mic along with the sound from the other aid? if it combines the sound then isn't zoom control just like cros link? what if the aid was kept in zoom control at all times?
    The transmitter will continue to transmit a signal when the Hearing Aid is in a directional mode so you will be hearing input from both sides. I would not keep a hearing aid in directional mode all the time.

  7. Default

    Looks like phonak has 2 new cros solutions. CROS H20 and CROS 13. So basically both solutions uses 13 batteries to deal with the 2-3 day battery life of the old cros solutions that used 312 batteries. The h2o has the added benefit of water resistance. The h2o appears to be the bte version and the cros 13 is the ite version of the devise. Stereozoom and zoom control is still not an option.

    http://www.phonakpro.com/content/dam...S_027-1075.pdf
    Last edited by doubledown; 09-20-2012 at 05:22 PM.
    0250 Hz L-35 R-100
    0500 Hz L-40 R-100
    1000 Hz L-50 R-95
    2000 Hz L-65 R-110
    4000 Hz L-90 R-100
    8000 Hz L-95 R-100
    Oticon Agil on left ear with power receiver

  8. #8
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by doubledown View Post
    Looks like phonak has 2 new cros solutions. CROS H20 and CROS 13. So basically both solutions uses 13 batteries to deal with the 2-3 day battery life of the old cros solutions that used 312 batteries. The h2o has the added benefit of water resistance. The h2o appears to be the bte version and the cros 13 is the ite version of the devise. Stereozoom and zoom control is still not an option.

    http://www.phonakpro.com/content/dam...S_027-1075.pdf
    Stereozoom is not an option because this feature uses binaural mapping and a CROS transmitter isn't a hearing aid...even if it was it's not true binaural hearing since the one good ear is the only one hearing - monaural listening. Stereozoom (and I would think any circuit that uses binaural processing of some sort) requires binaural hearing.

  9. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DocAudio View Post
    Stereozoom is not an option because this feature uses binaural mapping and a CROS transmitter isn't a hearing aid...even if it was it's not true binaural hearing since the one good ear is the only one hearing - monaural listening. Stereozoom (and I would think any circuit that uses binaural processing of some sort) requires binaural hearing.
    you are correct, binaural hearing is required to take maximum advantage of these binaural features. But I believe these features can be adapted for monaural hearing.

    for zoomcontrol let's say my left ear is the good ear and the right is deaf. I have an aid in my left ear and the cros transmitter in my right. I choose to zoom in on sound coming from my left. then the cros transmitter would do nothing and the left aid will pick up the sound coming from the left. I believe with 2 fully functional aids the cros transmitter would be receiving a stream from the left ear and combining the sound with whatever sound it picked up coming from the left taking into account head shadowing.
    Now if choose to zoom in on sounds coming from the right then the cros transmitter would stream the sound to my aid which would combine it with whatever sound it picked up coming from the right taking into account the head shadowing effect.

    for stereozoom all it's doing is using 4 microphones as part of a microphone array. only 1 signal comes from processing sounds coming from the 4 microphones so one ear is all that is needed to hear it. i believe each aid does this processing independently and all that is needed is for it receive the sounds from the 2 microphone on the other aid. so long as the cross transmitter has 2 microphones and possibly dsp for processing microphone arrays this should be doable.

    this would essentially make the cros transmitter almost like a fully functional aid. I guess the question to phonak is whether it's worth their time to provide such a solution. seems to me that phonak's aids have all the tools to do what a cros transmitter does.
    Last edited by doubledown; 09-22-2012 at 12:13 AM.
    0250 Hz L-35 R-100
    0500 Hz L-40 R-100
    1000 Hz L-50 R-95
    2000 Hz L-65 R-110
    4000 Hz L-90 R-100
    8000 Hz L-95 R-100
    Oticon Agil on left ear with power receiver

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Location
    Central Kentucky, USA
    Posts
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    The problem doesn't lie in the hearing aid...it lies in the brain.

    Someone with unilateral hearing loss can only hear on one side. Binaural hearing requires the ability to hear with both ears...regardless of what electronic manipulations you do with the tech.

    I can guarantee you that if there was a way for a hearing aid manufacturer to restore a sensation of binaural hearing for someone with only one functioning ear...they would be ALL OVER that...

    All the advanced tech in the world doesn't make up for the fact that the wearer is still only hearing everything from one side. Binaural speech mapping, which is what StereoZoom is, REQUIRES 2 functional ears. Binaural hearing, by definition, is hearing with 2 ears...a CROS transmitter - even if it had directional functionality - doesn't give the person binaural hearing or the ability to use a binaural amplification system.

    But I'll tell ya what...because now I feel the need to know exactly why it won't work. I'll contact my rep and have her talk to the engineers about why it doesn't/can't work and post the response on here so we can all be a little more knowledgeable about it.

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