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Colorado Springs

Audiology, Inc.

 

Phone  719.520.1155

LOCATION  & DIRECTIONS

Dr. Gene McHugh

Licensed Audiologist

In Colorado

OFFICE HOURS

Mountain Time USA

Mon-Thurs

9:00AM-5:00PM

Closed Fridays

 

 © Copyright 2017 

 

 

 

SELECTION PROTOCOL FOR HEARING AID FITTINGS 

 The  American Academy of Audiology (AAA) has established guidelines for fitting hearing aids on adults. Colorado Springs Audiology follows these guidelines, but this page includes modifications we routinely use in our clinic.  The six recommended stages include:

 
 
  • Assessment (basic testing)

  • Treatment planning (determination of hearing and practical needs

  • Hearing aid selection (determining the style and circuit to best meet one's needs

  • Verification (a standardized measurement to establish the amount of benefit

  • Orientation (learning to use the hearing aids)

Audiologic assessment

This initial stage includes:

  • history (comprehensive review of factors relating to hearing problems)
  • otoscopic inspection (i.e., visual inspection of ear canals and eardrums)
  • audiometry (pure tone thresholds, speech testing, measurements of tolerance)
  • profile of hearing disability (self-assessment to determine impact on everyday listening situations)

Purpose:

  • determine the type and degree of hearing loss
  • determine need for medical referral based upon FDA and state regulations
  • determine candidacy and motivation for amplification

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Treatment planning

The second stage includes:

  • review of findings (discuss results from the audiologic assessment)
  • review realistic goals and expectations (discuss potential benefits, limitations, and costs of hearing aids)
  • determine course of action (joint decision between patient, family, and audiologist)

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Hearing aid selection

The third stage defines the following:

  • monaural vs. binaural need: (fitting one ear versus both ears)
  • electro-acoustic needs: (frequency-gain characteristics, signal processing, compression characteristics based upon type and degree of hearing loss)
  • style: BTE; ITE, ITC or CIC based upon the acoustic factors and patient preference (click on styles on homepage for more information about hearing aid styles)
  • specific requirements: (programmable options, multiple memories, telephone, volume control preference, directional microphone, color, remote control)
  • ear impression(s): (custom molding of ear canal which takes approximately five minutes)

Note: The first three stages normally occur during the initial visit.

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Verification

This stage normally occurs after the hearing aid(s) have been received from the manufacturer and includes:

  • Quality control: (electro-acoustic measurements to determine whether the hearing aids meet intended design parameters)
  • Physical fit: (determine if the earmolds or hearing aid shell fit comfortably without acoustic feedback, are cosmetically satisfactory and can be inserted and removed)
  • Performance (manipulation of hearing aid to determine audibility and tolerance; comfort)

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Orientation

Orientation involves necessary counseling, training, and referrals to facilitate effective use of the hearing aid device(s). The two components of this stage include:

  • Hearing aid use and care (i.e., how to use the hearing aid, special features, how to insert batteries, clean, troubleshoot, use with telephone, adjust volume)
  • Expectations for performance (minimizing acoustic feedback, reducing occlusion effect, strategies when using the telephone, providing means to understand better in noise)

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Validation

The final stage is necessary to ensure that particular goals are met. Validation includes:

  • Psychometric or subjective measurement of speech perception (i.e., the degree of improvement in hearing sensitivity and in word recognition in quiet and in noise)
  • Client self-assessment (e.g., Client Oriented Scale of Improvement - COSI)

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