04 April 2012




: Patty Cortez, email:


phone: 610-446-7302


Tom VanArman; email:



: Donna Penman Assistive Technology: Don Groff, email:


Newsletter committee

: Diana Bender, email:


, and Don Groff

Meeting Schedule: 1st Monday of each Month, except January, February, July and August: William Jeanes Library, 4051 Joshua Road, Lafayette Hill, PA 19444 Meeting Time: 6:00 – 7:45 p.m.


Insomnia Worsens Tinnitus

Detroit — A new report from Henry Ford Hospital shows that insomnia can have a negative effect on tinnitus, worsening the functional and emotional toll of chronic ringing, buzzing, hissing, or clicking in the head and ears. The study shows a significant association between insomnia and the severity of perceived tinnitus symptoms, with patients who have insomnia reporting greater emotional distress from tinnitus.

“Tinnitus involves cognitive, emotional, and psycho-physiological processes, which can result in an increase in a patient’s distress,” says study co-author Kathleen L. Yaremchuk, MD, chair, Department of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery at Henry Ford. “Sleep complaints, including insomnia, in these patients may result in a decrease in their tolerance to tinnitus.”

The research team conducted a retrospective study of 117 patients treated between 2009 and 2011 at Henry Ford. Information was gathered from patients through telephone and written interviews using the Tinnitus Reaction Questionnaire (or TRQ, which determines the emotional effects of tinnitus has had on a person’s lifestyle and general well-being) and the Insomnia Severity Index (or ISI, a brief screening measure of insomnia) scales.

Severity of TRQ was shown to be a good predictor of sleep disturbance and of group association, especially the “emotional” subscore component (sensitivity 96.9% and specificity 55.3 % for identifying tinnitus patients with insomnia). The greater the insomnia disability, the more severe the patient’s complaints were regarding the tinnitus, the study finds.

“Treating patients with tinnitus is challenging,” notes Yaremchuk. “A chronic tinnitus patient presents a challenging clinical picture that may include anxiety, depression, annoyance, or self-reported emotional distress. And one of the most frequent self-reported complaints of tinnitus patients is ‘getting to sleep.’”

The study also offers further proof that evaluation and treatment of insomnia patients with tinnitus may result in a reduction in tinnitus symptom severity.

April 26, 2012 Hearing Review

HLAA Convention Speaker

The Hearing Loss Association of America® is pleased to announce David G. Myers, Ph.D., as the keynote speaker at its Convention 2012 Opening Session, June 21, in Providence, Rhode Island. A social psychologist at Hope College, Holland, Michigan, Dr. Myers is a driving force behind greater use of hearing loop technology in the U.S. with his campaign “Let’s Loop America.” 



Dr. Myers’ keynote address, Accelerating Progress Toward the Looping of America—and Doubled Hearing Instrument Functionality, will report on the growing momentum nationwide in support of making assistive listening directly hearing instrument compatible. In a pre-Convention statement Dr. Myers stated, “The accelerating movement to make listening assistance directly hearing aid compatible—thanks to hearing advocates across the country, and now also to major media visibility and growing support from audio contractors and hearing professionals—is so exciting. With installations ranging from home TV rooms, to New York City’s subways booths and future taxis, to places of worship and auditoriums nationwide, more and more people are appreciating that hearing aids can also serve as convenient wireless loudspeakers that deliver customized sound.” Using a telecoil and hearing loop together is seamless, cost-effective, and unobtrusive, without the need for additional equipment. 


April 25, 2012 HLAA Press Release

Soundbite Hearing System

Your news-editor recently met a gentleman who has a hearing aid system I had not yet heard of and I thought you would be interested also.


SoundBite Hearing System is a non-surgical bone conduction prosthetic device that transmits sound via the teeth. It is an alternative to earlier surgical bone conduction prosthetic devices, which require surgical implantation of a metal post into the skull to conduct sound.

SoundBite uses the tooth instead of the post and eliminates the need for surgery. It is therefore typically lower in complications and in cost than the prevalent surgical treatment.


SoundBite Hearing System has two principle components: a Behind-The-Ear (BTE) microphone unit that is worn on the impaired ear and a removable, custom-made In-The-Mouth (ITM) hearing device worn on the upper, left or right back teeth. Both components have rechargeable batteries and a charger is also included.


SoundBite Hearing System

Sound is captured and processed by the BTE microphone unit which transmits signals to the ITM hearing device. The ITM receives these signals and converts them into sound vibrations. These imperceptible sound vibrations travel via the teeth, through bones in the skull, to the functioning inner ear or cochlea, bypassing problems in the outer or middle ear entirely. As such, the device is intended to help patients with single sided deafness (SSD) and conductive hearing loss (CHL) and has received FDA clearance for these indications. SoundBite is developed and marketed by Sonitus Medical, Inc.


Next Meeting: Rap Session

Our next meeting will feature the ever popular rap session. Here’s your chance to share experiences, something you’ve read or whatever you’d like with other chapter members and learn a few things yourself. We will also talk about topics for future meetings. Please join us for our next meeting which will be held on


May 7, 2012

beginning at 6:00 p.m. at the newly renovated Jeanes Library.

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