Treatment of single sided deafness often neglected

Total loss of hearing in one ear is a much more common affliction than most people realise. It is often left untreated, causing an unnecessarily severe loss in quality of life.

A report published in the United Kingdom in May of 2003 found that tens of thousands of people in the UK suffer from the condition known as Single Sided Deafness (SSD) and that 9,000 new cases are added every year. The symptoms are very different from those experienced by people with hearing loss in both ears and for many sufferers, this type of hearing loss has a severe and disabling impact on work, home and social interactions.

While calling for more awareness of this common condition, the report points out that SSD can be successfully treated with hearing aids which are available throughout the UK through the National Health Service, NHS.

Two types of hearing devices are used to alleviate the effects of SSD. One is a Bone anchored hearing device which works by transferring sound from the deaf side to the hearing ear via bone conduction. The other type transmits the sound from the deaf side to the hearing side via two hearing aids and a connecting wire.

The report was issued by the Advisory Group for Single Sided Deafness, an expert group of patient, primary care representatives, surgeons and audiologist.


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