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Thread: Article in NY Times regarding OTC Hearing Aids

  1. #11

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    This article seemed very superficial. What about tumors and other medical problems that show up on an audiogram? An audiologist may refer for other testing. Also, having an audiologist at Costco has enabled me to try two top of the line hearing aids. One worked well for the fairly challenging environment I work in, the other definitely not. My hearing loss is mild-to-moderate. This enables me to keep my job and use the skills I have instead of workarounds or leaving.

    There are definitely things wrong with the hearing aid profession (why I'm grateful for this forum), like non-transparency. But my guess is that this will make things worse rather than better. I don't want to see watered-down products made by companies not as invested as the ones that make them now. I would like to see hearing aids for anyone who needs them, though.

    This article was too shallow, and prompted comments that were (in general). I'd like to see a more balanced article showing both the strengths and weaknesses and what might be done to address them. The pros and cons of this approach to hearing aids, rather than a simplistic one that brushes off the serious downsides. The New York Times should do a better job of putting this forward. It's not just "greedy" people making a bundle. Most audiologists I know have a very middle-class lifestyle. They do an important service if they are good at their jobs. They probably have student loans to pay off as well.
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  2. #12
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    There is a truism: Everyone's hearing is different. That can be true where the graphs are almost alike. The more typical aging loss is mild to moderate while still maintaining good Word Recognition Scores.

    Your WRS are mid-range. (60's) Mine are worse. That means that an OTC aid isn't going to give either of us the hearing quality of someone whose WRS are in the 90's. Those people are a more likely candidate for the products mentioned.

    I was in the good group until a bout with Meniere's. That changed everything. I went from being able to use cheap Chinese aids to having troublesome results with high end ones.
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