Our research focuses on the assessment, prescription, verification and validation of bone conduction amplification (BCA) devices with a goal of improving outcomes for BCA users and transferring knowledge to other clinicians involved in BCA.
- Adult services: Identification, education, assessment, fitting and follow-up with bone anchored hearing systems and implants.
- Pediatric services: Identification, education, assessment of school-age children, fitting and follow-up with bone anchored hearing systems and implants.
What is the difference between bone conduction hearing aids and other kinds of hearing aids?
At iRSM, we provide bone anchored hearing aids. A metal implant is surgically placed in the bone behind your ear. The hearing aid device takes sound from the air and turns it into vibrations that are sent through your skull to reach the cochlea, which then sends the sound message to your brain. This kind of hearing aid is meant for patients who have a functioning inner ear but cannot wear a traditional air conduction hearing aid, from either congenital (birth) or acquired (disease or trauma) reasons.
Conventional hearing aids sit in the opening of the ear and amplify the sound coming through the air. This kind of hearing aid is meant for patients with intact outer and middle ear structures. We do not provide this type of hearing aid at iRSM.
The third type of device for hearing loss is the cochlear implant. It may seem similar to a bone anchored hearing aid because both of them involve implanting something in the skull bone behind the ear. However, the cochlear implant is meant for patients who have hearing loss in the inner ear, whereas the bone anchored hearing aid is meant for patients with an intact inner ear but an absent or insufficient outer and/or middle ear. We do not provide cochlear implants at iRSM.
Becoming a patient
In order to become a patient and receive bone conduction hearing services at iRSM, you can do one of the following:
- Be referred by your family doctor, specialist or audiologist, or
- Refer yourself (this will require a recent audiogram, no older than a year and completed by a bone conduction specialist).
If referring yourself, please use this referral form.
Treatment pathway for iRSM patients
- Once the referral is processed, iRSM will schedule a time for you to be seen at a consult clinic
- At this clinic, you will be seen by:
- An ENT surgeon
- An iRSM audiologist
- Pre-treatment patient education appointment
- If your type of hearing loss determines that you are a candidate for the program, an educational session will be scheduled for you. This appointment may take up to two hours.
- Implant surgery
- Post-operative follow-up visits
- Processor delivery at approximately three to four months
- Annual interdisciplinary follow-up as prescribed