Is there anything new available for medical professionals with hearing loss who need to use stethoscopes? It seems the only viable options are unappealing oversized headphones, uncomfortable adaptors, or taking hearing aids out.
Thanks for your question. For an overview of this topic, please see the article, Amplified Stethoscope Options for Professionals with Hearing Loss. Since that article was published, however, a new solution has become available.
The Audiologist's Choice® Amplified Stethoscope is designed to wirelessly transmit heart and lung sounds directly to the communication devices (i.e. streamer) that accompany most hearing instruments. The streamer, in turn, delivers body sounds directly to the hearing instruments. The Audiologists's Choice® Amplified Stethoscope has been successfully paired during field trials to the Phonak iCom, Siemens miniTek, Widex M-DEX and Hansaton i-com2 (NOTE: this does not represent an exhaustive list of hearing instruments that will work wirelessly with the Audiologist's Choice® Bluetooth Electronic Stethoscope). Designed primarily for use with hearing instruments accompanied with wireless streamers, an audio-in cable is packaged with the device in the event the amplifier of the stethoscope will not successfully pair with the streamer. The audio-in cable may be used to connect the amplifier to the streamer, permitting wireless communication of body sounds from the streamer to the hearing instruments.
For more information, check out the Audiologist's Choice® Amplified Stethoscope via www.oaktreeproducts.com or see my blog write up, aubankaitis.wordpress.com/2012/04/18/ac-stethoscope/ on this product.
A.U. Bankaitis, PhD, is Vice President of Oaktree Products, Inc., a multi-line distributor of audiology and hearing-related products based in St. Louis, MO. Dr. Bankaitis is an audiologist who has been involved in educating colleagues about various practical aspects of clinical practice. Access and subscribe to Dr. Bankaitis' blog for the latest info on product solutions and other topics related to audiology at aubankaitis.wordpress.com