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High freuency hearing loss
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High freuency hearing loss

I have high frequency hearing loss.  The lower frequencies are close to normal.  I do have a problem understanding people when there is noise in the background, and particularly when I am talking to a woman with a high voice.

4 years ago, I bought the top of the line Widex aids open fit behind the ear aids, but they don't really help in noisy situations, so I rarely use them.  I have been told that, recently, there are significant improvements in the open fit, behind the ear aids made my Oticon.  These things cost a fortune, so I am reluctant to buy them unless I will have a major improvement in speech when there is a noisy background as in most restaurants.

Anyone have an opinion on the recently designed aids?
Thanks
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1978476_tn?1327931589
Hello, Thank you for the question.  When it comes to hearing well in the presence of background noise, there are several key factors to consider.  One of the main factors is your hearing loss and from what you have explained you have normal or close to normal hearing for low frequency sounds.  
When you look at the frequency response of background noise you will find it to be made up of mostly low frequency information and with normal to almost normal hearing in low frequencies you will always hear background noise.
Now, the advancements with hearing aids has been made so that the hearing aids know the difference between that low frequency background noise and speech and they have the ability to pick the speech out of the noise.
You always have to consider your environment and have realistic expecations.
In most states hearing aids have a trial period so I do encourage you to try a new pair of aids and see for yourself.  Make sure you know the terms of the trail before you agree to take the aids out of the clinic. There will most likely be a fee if you do decide to return within the trial period.  
You can also find one of our providers by visiting www.hearusa.com

I hope this information was helpful for you.

Rachele M. Orsini, Au.D.
6 Comments
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1766457_tn?1313626038
Dear Andiamo1,

Thank you for your query.

1. High frequency hearing loss in the speech frequencies causes a difficulty in understanding speech while listening in group situations, while listening to female and children's voices, while listening to the television and so on.

2. Consonant sounds are not heard in the speech. Only vowel sounds are heard. This leads to a lack of clarity.

3. You may try various high end hearing aids such as the Oticon Agil, Widex Clear or the Unitron Yuu. These hearing aids have advanced technology such as sound compressibility, enhanced sound intelligibility, directional microphones, special algorithms, fuzzy logic and so on.However, no single hearing aid will provide clarity which is inherent in high frequency hearing loss.

4. You may require the use of assistive devices such as hearing loops or telecoils to overcome this difficulty.

5. If you want a specific solution, I would request you to share your latest PTA (Pure Tone Audiogram).

I must emphasize that this is a common problem.

Hope that this information helps and hope that you will get better soon.

Thank you for using MedHelp's "Ask an Expert" Service, where we feature some of world's renowned medical experts in their fields. Millions have benefitted from our service to get personalized advice for them and for their loved ones.

Best Regards,
Dr. Sumit Bhatti
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220090_tn?1379170787
Thanks so much for the reply.  How can I share the audiogram?
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1978476_tn?1327931589
Hello, If you would like to share your audiogram you can email it to me or you can simply write out your thresholds at 500Hz, 1000Hz, 2000Hz, 3000Hz and 6000Hz.  My email is ***@**** if you would prefer to attach it in an email.

Thank you,

Rachele M. Orsini, Au.D.
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220090_tn?1379170787
My audiogram:
Left  500 = -30
1000 =  -25
2000 = -20
3000 = 55
6000 = -65

Right ear identical except 6000 = -80
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1978476_tn?1327931589
Thank you for sharing your audiogram.  As I mentioned earlier in our forum, you most likely had normal or close to normal hearing for low frequency information and that is what your audiogram shows.  I have fit many patients with this same loss with new digital hearing aids and we have good outcomes.  

In my opinion you should definitely give the new hearing aids a try.  You can find a qualified, licensed hearing care provider by visiting our website www.hearusa.com

Thank you,

Rachele M. Orsini, Au.D.
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