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Read the latest news, research updates and trends in audiology and hearing care. Post comments and share with your colleagues!

Friday, October 12, 2018

The addition of hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) to standard corticosteroid treatment is associated with higher rates of hearing recovery in patients with sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL), according to a new study (JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2018 Sep 27. doi: 10.1001/jamaoto.2018.2133). A systematic review, which included three randomized clinical trials and 16 nonrandomized studies, found that the rate of complete hearing recovery in SSNHL patients who received both HBOT and medical therapy of systemic and/or intratympanic corticosteroids was 29.4 percent, compared with 20.7 percent in those who were only treated with medications. Absolute hearing gain was also significantly greater in the HBOT and medical treatment group than in the medical treatment alone group for the overall frequencies. Furthermore, the benefit of this treatment approach was greater in those with severe to profound hearing loss.

The authors wrote that this study demonstrates for the first time to date that HBOT combined with medical treatment is associated with a significant improvement in complete hearing recovery and any hearing recovery. "Using HBOT, it is possible to maximize the oxygen partial pressure supplied to the inner ear," they wrote. "This process can minimize ischemic damage after SSNHL and aid vascular recovery. Furthermore, it can provide antibacterial effects through oxygen radicals and promote angiogenesis with tissue regeneration." 

Thursday, October 11, 2018

gsi.JPGGrason-Stadler (GSI) released its latest handheld screening tympanometer, the GSI Allegro™.

The Allegro is ready to take on any testing environment that requires tympanometry or ipsilateral acoustic reflexes. The Allegro has a four-button navigation panel, making it easy to use and easy to learn.

The Allegro comes equipped with a charging cradle, printer, and a convenient carrying case allowing for easy transport to satellite clinics and off-site community events. A fully charged battery will last for approximately eight hours of testing and the device holds up to 32 patient records. Flexible printing options include printing all tests at the end of the day or individually after each patient.

Additional features of the Allegro include auto-start and customizable user settings. With auto-start, the Allegro automatically begins recording a tympanogram as soon as the ear canal seal is obtained, allowing for quick and efficient testing even on the most challenging patients. Default test settings such as reflex frequencies may be customized on the Allegro to fit each clinic’s preferences. To learn more about the Allegro, visit www.grason-stadler.com.


Friday, October 5, 2018

The U.S. FDA approved the marketing of the first self-fitting hearing aid for people with mild to moderate hearing loss. The Bose Hearing Aid allows users to fit, adjust, and control the device without a hearing health professional. This nod came after the FDA reviewed the results of clinical studies that showed the device's self-fitting features to be comparable with professional fitting in terms of adjusting the amount of amplification, speech in noise testing, and overall performance.

"Today's marketing authorization provides certain patients with access to a new hearing aid that provides them with direct control over the fit and functionality of the device," said Malvina Eydelman, MD, director of the Division of Ophthalmic, and Ear, Nose and Throat Devices at the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health in a press release. "The FDA is committed to ensuring that individuals with hearing loss have options for taking an active role in their health care."

The Bose Hearing aid makes use of air conduction through sound vibrations that are captured in the device's microphones. It allows users to adjust the hearing aid through a mobile app, enabling them to control its features to suit real-time and real-world listening environments. Notably, the device comes with a label informing consumers when to consult a hearing health care professional.

Some states, however, may still require consumers to purchase these hearing aids from a licensed hearing aid dispenser. At present, the FDA is still drafting a set of regulations for over-the-counter hearing aids as required by the FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017. These regulations are expected to be reviewed and finalized by 2020. (Read this cover story for more on OTC hearing aids and the FDA regulations.)

The Bose Hearing Aid was reviewed under the FDA's De Novo premarket regulatory pathway for new and low-to-moderate risk products for which there are no prior legally marketed device.


Friday, October 5, 2018

​Eargo (https://eargo.com/) has received the Best Technology Innovation – Consumer Devices for its air conduction hearing aid Eargo Max and Best Company for Accelerated Growth at this year's Medtech Insight Awards. The judges of Medtech Insight Awards, which honor those who strive to cure, inform, minimize treatment burden, and make human lives better through medical devices and diagnostics, said Eargo has grown their team by more than 200%, brought two products to market, and is on track to launch their third-generation product by 2019. "This technology could really turnaround a difficult market where patient compliance can be a challenge due to issues with 'stigma,'" they said.

Friday, September 28, 2018

HTF Market Intelligence has released the World Canal Hearing Aids Market study on the devices’ market size, industry status and forecast, competition landscape and growth opportunity to 2023. The market study is segmented by key regions that are accelerating the marketization, and includes key players such as William Demant, Sonova, Sivantos, GN Hearing, ReSound, Starkey, and Widex, It also categorizes the international canal hearing aid market by companies, region, type, and end-use industry. The full report is available at http://bit.ly/2NCE52E.