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Oticon Medical: Ponto Evidence - January 2019

Are People with Single Sided Deafness Candidates for Bone Anchored Hearing Systems?

Barinder Samra, MSc

June 25, 2018

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Question

Are people with single sided deafness candidates for bone anchored hearing systems?

Answer

Yes. There are two main bone anchored hearing system (BAHS) candidacy indication categories, and one secondary indication category. Audiologically speaking, patients can be fitted with a Ponto system if they have conductive and mixed hearing losses, or if they have a unilateral profound hearing loss, also known as single-sided deafness (SSD). The secondary indication category includes patients who have other physical characteristics or other medical conditions that make wearing a conventional hearing aid impossible.

Patients with SSD have one completely nonfunctioning cochlea and one functioning cochlea. When looking at their audiogram, you'll see two very different threshold measurements: one showing normal or near-normal hearing, the other showing a profound sensorineural hearing loss. 

A patient qualifies as a BAHS SSD candidate if their better ear has normal or near-normal hearing (with an average air conduction threshold of < 20 dB HL), and the worse ear has a profound hearing loss. They can also be candidate for BAHS treatment if they cannot have a CROS aid, (e.g., have an allergic reaction to an earmold), or if they are a candidate for a CROS aid, but choose not to use an air conduction CROS system. For patients with SSD, the sound processor is placed on the deaf side, and picks up sound that is then transferred to the functioning cochlea on the opposite side via bone conduction, working as a CROS device.

Candidates for a BAHS include individuals with SSD caused by:

  • Acoustic neuroma
  • Sudden deafness
  • Congenital causes
  • Cholesteatoma
  • Ototoxic drugs
  • Meniere's disease

This Ask the Expert is an excerpt from the CE Course, Bone Anchored Hearing Systems - Principles and Candidacy.


barinder samra

Barinder Samra, MSc

Clinical Trainer

Barinder is a registered Clinical Scientist in Audiology, and completed his MSc in Audiological Sciences from the University of Southampton in 2009. He has extensive clinical experience in the assessment/fitting of hearing aids with both adult and paediatric patients, as well as diagnostic audio-vestibular testing.  In addition, Barinder has worked for the University of Southampton Auditory Implant Service, performing assessments of cochlear implant candidacy and device tuning for cochlear implant recipients.  Barinder has recently started working for Oticon Medical as a Clinical Trainer, where he is primarily responsible for internal/external clinical training and support, for Bone Anchored Hearing Systems (BAHS).


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