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Rum_Pirate
10-03-2016, 07:44 AM
The Starkey Foundation were here last week with our Rotary Club.
I and a few others in Rotary decided to do their test as we wanted to personally experience the process so we could advise and recommend it to others.

I thought that I had 'borderline' hearing.

Ha!

Filled out form. Had ears inspected. Had one ear flushed to remove a little wax.
Had a basic info chat and 'sound test' in all quadrants around me, then was whisked off to a chair and all sorts of things inserted into the ears. More 'sound test' in all quadrants around me.
My God, the sounds were LOUD. I could hear conversations 50'0" away.
Then transferred to another table and given a pair of basic hearing aids!! That was not expected or anticipated. I was not expecting that.

Oh well, I am now aware of my hearing deficiencies/shortcomings.
I never went to that many concerts or continually played music excessively loud. Guess it was just old age.

The Starkey foundation are doing a fantastic program.
They provide the basic hearing aids and also supply batteries (which apparently only last about 2 weeks) and replacements.

So now I have hearing aids.

EVERYTHING is SO much louder and there is SO much sound. Yes,
I have turned down the volume.
The volume of the radio in the car has gone from 19 to 9. Sharp noises are still loud.
The downside is that the selective hearing that I had will no longer be a valid excuse for not hearing my wife. :d

I will now probably look at buying the less obtrusive models that they sell, although SWMBO did not notice the aids in my ears at first and they are not obtrusive.

I wholeheartedly recommend that you get your ears tested. :ycool:

Thank you Starkey for highlighting the problem of my hearing and keep up your great work.

I am now an ardent supporter and promoter of their work.

https://www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org



Who We Are
We use hearing as a vehicle to change lives around the world.


The Story
As a young man, William F. Austin, founder of Starkey Hearing Foundation, realized his true calling in life was helping people hear, and that by doing so, he could have a lasting impact on the world.
For more than 50 years, Austin has been providing the gift of hearing to people in need, and to formalize the philanthropic efforts of Starkey Hearing Technologies, he officially founded Starkey Hearing Foundation in 1984. He had a simple premise:

"Alone we can't do much. Together we can change the world."Austin built the organization on his vision ó So the World May Hear. Over the last three decades, he has expanded the Foundationís reach from Minnesota across the United States and around the world. With the help of thousands of volunteers and supporters, Starkey Hearing Foundation has become the embodiment of Austinís incredible vision and has provided more than 1.9 million hearing aids and care to people in need.
PurposeGive the gift of hearing to those in need, empowering them to achieve their potential.
CommitmentStarkey Hearing Foundation made a commitment in 2010 to Clinton Global Initiative to provide 1 million hearing aids this decade.
We continue to travel the globe helping people in need, and to date have given the gift of hearing in more than 100 countries.

Shang
10-03-2016, 07:53 AM
What, Rummy?

No thanks, I've seen it all, heard it all.

Norman Bernstein
10-03-2016, 07:56 AM
Glad you were diagnosed and received a big benefit from hearing aids.

I don't need them, at this point, although virtually EVERY Bernstein in my extended family over the age of 65 has hearing loss and wears hearing aids. I've been involved with my mother, whose hearing loss is on the severe side; about a year and a half ago, I took her to Costco to get new hearing aids. She had previously (6 years ago) gotten hearing aids at a local audiologist, but the price was VERY high, and the hearing aids didn't help nearly as much as they should have.

They've gotten quite sophisticated, these days... but are nonetheless expensive. The model she eventually got is digitally programmed for equalization, and the loudness can be adjusted with a tiny button on the top. They are fairly unobtrusive, although at age 92, vanity isn't really much of an issue. The batteries don't last long... a few days, at most. The biggest problem seems to be the problem that everyone I know, who wears hearing aids, complains about: background noise. In a restaurant, she often takes them out, because of all the background noise.

The previous set of hearing aids had cost $5,000 at the time... the new ones from Costco, only $2600, but are far more sophisticated. One nice feature: we were given a kit with replaceable parts, so that the hearing aids can be cleaned quite readily.

I figure I've got a little while before I go down the same route. I have no noticeable hearing loss now, but if genetics has anything to do with it, I'll need them eventually.

Rum_Pirate
10-03-2016, 08:01 AM
Glad you were diagnosed and received a big benefit from hearing aids.
…..I figure I've got a little while before I go down the same route. I have no noticeable hearing loss now, but if genetics has anything to do with it, I'll need them eventually.

I'm glad I have been diagnosed.

As to having no noticeable hearing loss now, I bet if you had a test you would be surprised. :ycool:

Shang
10-03-2016, 08:01 AM
The batteries only last about two weeks?

What do batteries cost?

Norman Bernstein
10-03-2016, 08:06 AM
The batteries only last about two weeks?

What do batteries cost?

Less than that... a few days, at times. They are 'zinc-air' batteries, available at CVS, Walgreens, etc... they're not super-expensive; maybe $6 for a pack of 12. It's not the cost, it's the inconvenience. The hearing aids play a little 'chime' when the batteries are low.


As to having no noticeable hearing loss now, I bet if you had a test you would be surprised. :ycool:

Perhaps, but the overriding criteria, I think, has to do with whether hearing loss becomes an issue, in one's life. I don't have a problem with hearing in normal situations, in comparison to the younger family members, so if there IS any hearing loss, it's got to be minor right now; for example, my daughters or granddaughters have never complained about the volume of the TV, when we're watching together.

Still, at age 65 (on Wednesday, When I turn 65), I'm bound to have SOME hearing loss. Perhaps my teenage years, standing in front of a 100W amplifier and playing guitar, did some damage.

Rum_Pirate
10-03-2016, 08:09 AM
The batteries only last about two weeks?

What do batteries cost?


I don't know, but on Alibaba they appear to cost about $1.15 each.
They gave me 16, told me that they would last 10 days or a little longer dependant on volume and I tun them off.

Interesting thing is that one side of the battery has four little holes.
These are covered by a sticky label which is removed when inserting them into the aid.

Anyone know the purpose of these holes?

Norman Bernstein
10-03-2016, 08:17 AM
I don't know, but on Alibaba they appear to cost about $1.15 each.
They gave me 16, told me that they would last 10 days or a little longer dependant on volume and I tun them off.

Interesting thing is that one side of the battery has four little holes.
These are covered by a sticky label which is removed when inserting them into the aid.

Anyone know the purpose of these holes?

They are 'zinc-air' batteries... they generate a current when exposed to air. The sticky label is there to keep air out of the cells until they're ready to be used.


During discharge, a mass of zinc particles forms a porous anode (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anode), which is saturated with an electrolyte (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrolyte). Oxygen from the air reacts at the cathode (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathode) and forms hydroxyl (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydroxyl) ions which migrate into the zinc paste and form zincate (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zincate) (Zn(OH)2−
4), releasing electrons (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electron) to travel to the cathode. The zincate decays into zinc oxide (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zinc_oxide) and water returns to the electrolyte. The water and hydroxyl from the anode (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anode) are recycled at the cathode, so the water is not consumed. The reactions produce a theoretical 1.65 volts (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volts), but this is reduced to 1.35–1.4 V in available cells.

StevenBauer
10-03-2016, 08:36 AM
I'm surprised that you seem unclear about whether your hearing loss is from damage or age. My audiologist could clearly tell the difference and explained it to me. She was surprised how little damage I have given my history with power tools. You lose hearing at different frequencies depending on the cause of the loss.



Steven

Rum_Pirate
10-03-2016, 09:07 AM
I'm surprised that you seem unclear about whether your hearing loss is from damage or age. My audiologist could clearly tell the difference and explained it to me. She was surprised how little damage I have given my history with power tools. You lose hearing at different frequencies depending on the cause of the loss.



Steven


Interesting that you lose hearing at different frequencies depending on the cause of the loss.

Mine is the upper/high frequencies, e.g. kettle whistling.

It seems that the cause for me is ageing.



Found this re the causes etc

What is high-frequency hearing loss?High-frequency hearing loss occurs when the sensory hearing cells in your cochlea die or are damaged. These hairs are responsible for translating the noises your ears collect into electrical impulses, which your brain eventually interprets as recognizable sound. High-frequency sounds are perceived in the lower part of the cochlea, while the hair cells that perceive low-frequency sounds are located near the top. Because of this, hearing loss typically effects the higher frequencies before it effects the lower frequencies.

What are the causes of high frequency hearing loss?
Individuals of all ages can be effected by high-frequency hearing loss — and the reasons causing (http://www.healthyhearing.com/help/hearing-loss/causes) it are just as varied.
Noise: According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), more than 10 million Americans have suffered irreversible damage due to noise-induced hearing loss (http://www.healthyhearing.com/help/hearing-loss/noise)(NIHL), with 30-50 million more exposed to dangerous noise levels on a daily basis. The damage can occur as the result of a one-time, loud exposure to noise, such as a gunshot or explosion, or can occur over time with constant exposure to noise louder than 85 decibels (dB).
Aging: hearing loss that occurs as the result of the aging process is called presbycusis. Because this is a slow process which usually affects both ears equally, it’s often difficult to notice. One of the first signs is the inability to understand speech in noisy environments and high frequency sounds.
Genetics: Check your family history. If your relatives developed high-frequency hearing loss, you may be genetically predisposed to developing it as well.
Ototoxicity: some types of drugs are ototoxic, meaning they are harmful to your hearing health. Some of the more common ototoxic drugs include salicylates (aspirin) in large quantities, drugs used in chemotherapy treatments and aminoglycoside antibiotics.
Diseases: Meniere’s disease (http://www.healthyhearing.com/help/tinnitus/menieres-disease), which affects the inner ear, often occurs between the ages of 30-50 and may include hearing loss, tinnitus and sensitivity to loud sounds. In children, chronic Otitis Media (commonly known as an ear infection) can lead to hearing loss if it’s untreated. If your child has chronic, reoccurring ear infections, please consult a hearing healthcare professional before it affects their speech and language development.http://www.healthyhearing.com/report/52448-Understanding-high-frequency-hearing-loss

Ian McColgin
10-03-2016, 09:12 AM
Careful there Rum_Pirate. The Tinfoil Right has it in for these guys. Check out http://thehearingblog.com/archives/4954

Rum_Pirate
10-03-2016, 09:22 AM
Careful there Rum_Pirate. The Tinfoil Right has it in for these guys. Check out http://thehearingblog.com/archives/4954
There is there other news


http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/starkey-execs-indicted-20m-embezzlement-conspiracy-42264676

Ex-Starkey Execs Indicted in $20M Embezzlement Conspiracy



By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

MINNEAPOLIS — Sep 21, 2016, 8:40 PM ET





Three former executives of Minnesota-based Starkey Hearing Technologies took part in a conspiracy to embezzle more than $20 million from the hearing aid maker and its principal owner, the U.S. Attorney's office alleged Wednesday.
According to an indictment, between 2006 and last September, the defendants conspired to embezzle and misappropriate money and business opportunities belonging to Starkey and Sonion, a major supplier of hearing aid components to Starkey. The alleged scheme included a web of sham companies and dummy entities, federal prosecutors said.
"The defendants carried out a complex scheme to accomplish a simple goal: to embezzle funds for their own benefit," U.S. Attorney for Minnesota Andrew Luger said in a news release.
The indictment charges former company President Jerry Ruzicka, 59; former Chief Financial Officer Scott Nelson, 58; and former human resources head Larry Miller, 63. It also charges two other men who were business associates of Ruzicka's: Jeffrey Taylor, 55, who was president of Sonion, and Lawrence Hagen, 63.
Ruzicka's defense attorney, John Conard, said his client "has done nothing wrong."
"Jerry Ruzicka started working at Starkey in 1977. He has been dedicated to the company and its employees since his first day," Conard said in a statement.
The defendants are scheduled to make their initial appearances in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis later this week. It was unclear if the other four defendants have attorneys. A message left for a number believed to be Miller's was not immediately returned. Phone numbers for the other defendants could not immediately be found.
Ruzicka, Nelson and Miller were among Starkey executives fired from the private Eden Prairie-based company last September.
Starkey said the indictments "describe a web of criminal activity and concealment among former top executives."
"That description is in marked contrast to our long-held values and those of our separate foundation," the company said.
Starkey is known for its foundation that hosts annual star-studded charity galas headlined by such celebrities as former presidents Bill Clinton (http://abcnews.go.com/topics/news/us/bill-clinton.htm) and George W. Bush, Katy Perry (http://abcnews.go.com/topics/entertainment/music/katy-perry.htm) and Elton John (http://abcnews.go.com/topics/entertainment/music/elton-john.htm).


Ruzicka has filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against Starkey, alleging he was fired in retaliation for whistleblower activity. It's not known what the impact of the indictment will be on the lawsuit, which is scheduled for a mediation session Oct. 31, said Ruzicka's civil attorney, Marshall Tanick.

Canoez
10-03-2016, 09:23 AM
SWMBO has hearing loss in her left ear due to the progression of a disease which results in a benign tumor on the acoustic nerve. The tumors are generally considered inoperable because there is a 50/50 chance that you will be deaf as a result of surgery to remove the tumors, so the conservative approach is to preserve as much of the hearing as possible for as long as possible. So, SWMBO has very little hearing at this point in her left ear. However, that hearing aid is also a Bluetooth device and she wears a hearing aid in her right ear where she has normal hearing that is known as a cross hearing aid. The cross receives sound from the hearing aid in her left ear with a slight delay which helps to retain the "stereo" audio that most of us are used to which allows us to know which direction a sound has come from as well as to be able to hear what is said on her left side more easily.

There are also other methods which work for people who have lost the benefit of the acoustic nerve including ABI - a brain-stem implant that lets profoundly deaf people hear sounds. For those who do have the benefit of a functional acoustic nerve, Cochlear implants work very well.

Hwyl
10-03-2016, 10:06 AM
When you say the foundation gave you hearing aids,was there a cost involved? The foundation seems to be an arm of a for profit company.

Norman Bernstein
10-03-2016, 10:10 AM
There are also other methods which work for people who have lost the benefit of the acoustic nerve including ABI - a brain-stem implant that lets profoundly deaf people hear sounds. For those who do have the benefit of a functional acoustic nerve, Cochlear implants work very well.

A friend and former colleague of mine went suddenly nearly deaf, about 15 years ago.. the cause is unknown, but a virus was suspected.

He started with a very early cochlear implant, for which he carried an external wireless microphone. When we went sailing, we'd pass the microphone around, so he could hear the conversation. His voice changed quite a bit, which I guess is common with people who have profound hearing loss.

Fast forward 15 years, and his latest cochlear implants give him virtually normal hearing... no wireless mic needed, whatsoever. His voice has returned to normal. Truly a miracle.

Rum_Pirate
10-03-2016, 10:12 AM
When you say the foundation gave you hearing aids,was there a cost involved? The foundation seems to be an arm of a for profit company.

Gave and in 'free' and 'no charge', there was no cost - to me- involved. No money came out of my pocket/wallet/credit card.

I received two(2) hearing and and two (2) packs of batteries.

https://www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org

https://www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org/Community-Based-Hearing-Healthcare


Hearing MissionsCommunity-Based Hearing HealthCare
According to the World Health Organization, more than 360 million people have disabling hearing loss, with the greatest prevalence living in developing countries. Unfortunately, less than three percent of these individuals can afford hearing aids or even have access to the care they need. We are working tirelessly to change this by building strong partnerships, empowering local teams and expanding our three-phase Community-Based Hearing HealthCare model around the world.https://www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org/-/media/SHF/Pages/Placeholder-Images/phaseone.png?la=en

PHASE
1




Patient Identification

Identify and train partners and community-based health workers.
Identify, screen and give primary ear-care services to potential hearing aid candidates.
Take ear impressions.
Create custom earmolds.



https://www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org/~/media/SHF/Pages/Hearing-Missions-Landing/phasetwo

PHASE
2




Hearing Mission

Fit hearing aids and custom earmolds on qualified hearing aid candidates.
Counsel and train hearing aid recipients, teachers, student ambassadors and patients on how to care for and operate hearing aids.
Provide AfterCare information to hearing aid recipients on where to go and who to contact for follow-up services.
Select and train local program teams to execute ongoing program activities.

EXPLORE ALL HEARING MISSIONS Ľ (https://www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org/missions)

https://www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org/~/media/SHF/Pages/Hearing-Missions-Landing/phasethree

PHASE
3




AfterCare Program

Conduct outreach to provide AfterCare services to patients within the first month after receiving hearing aids.
Provide ongoing monthly AfterCare services at a central location giving patients access to additional care including recounseling, batteries and free services to repair or replace hearing aids when needed.
Monitor and evaluate program and team.
Provide on-going education for the program team and community-based healthcare workers.
Identify new hearing aid candidates for future phase one.