BICROS or single hearing aid for my SSD?

Hi everyone, I’ve had a single Phonak Audéo RIC for the past 5 years or so and am feeling it’s time for a replacement. I always thought I only needed one hearing aid for my SSD (totally deaf in my right ear) but from reading this forum recently it seems like a BICROS might prove to be a better fit—such as the new Sivantos, Widex and Phonak versions. Fortunately my insurance plan has pretty good hearing aid coverage but I’m also open to going the Costco route. Any advice or experience with BICROS aids would be much appreciated! (BTW my audiogram is a year and a half old and my hearing has probably slipped a bit since then.)

I have never really thought much of CROS devices up until recently, but the new generation of CROS aids seem much better than what was available previously - I am fitting the Widex CROS quite regularly now and my patients are reporting benefits and are happy with them and the improved balance of sound they provide. I would imagine the current Sivantos and Phonak versions are pretty good as well, and if you are already familiar with the sound & function of Phonak aids then one of these with a CROS on the other side may be a good starting point for you. Not sure if Costco offers CROS devices but some of the other posters on this site may help you with that. Only one way to find out and that is to take the plunge!

Thanks for the great insights MFAUD. Glad to hear your patients are seeing such a strong benefit to using the CROS aids. Definitely looks like the way to go for me. I was actually thinking of trying another brand than Phonak this time around but your point about sticking with them does make sense. Any other comments out there about BICROS are most welcome.

Bumping this thread…

Any opinions out there as to the best BICROS on the market right now–Sivantos, Widex or Phonak? I’m assuming the Sivantos might be best since it’s the newest, so in theory it has the latest and greatest technology. But you know what they say about assuming…

It’s not that you’re being ignored here, the problem with all CROS aids is that their performance seems a bit subjective and very much down to the individual. There’s a lady in my practice who I can’t separate from her CROS specs, even though they are getting on for 20 years old. Other people though, don’t perceive the same degree of benefit.

It’s also a bit of a ‘lumpy’ fitting for some people - the Widex system means you forking out for a pair of aids while only benefiting from one and the Phonak one involves flicking in and out of the CROS program while making blind changes during the programming phase - which is a bit of a poor customer experience too.

I haven’t fitted the Sivantos one at all - find an audiologist you are happy with and try at least a couple of them - even in-house you’ll get an idea of which one is likely to be closest out of the box. Get them with a return period and give them a bash, it’s honestly the only way to go.

You’re totally deaf in one ear, as am I. The only benefit to dual aids will be having a microphone on your deaf side. You won’t gain stereo hearing, you won’t gain speech discrimination, you won’t gain performance in noise, and you won’t gain the ability to locate sound direction. Spending an extra 4 figures on a glorified microphone and having an extra device to worry about has never been worth it to me.

Thanks Um bongo and JeffBowser.

As has been discussed before the Cros aids are very subjective. The only way to determine whether or not you prefer a single aid or cros is to do a trial. I tried two different single aids and was totally unimpressed. The Phonak Bi-Cros was a very significant improvement for me. I would never consider going back to a single aid. When I replace my Phonak Bi-Cros later this year I will only consider a Bi-Cros. Vic

You have hearing in both ears (as little as it is on the R). That changes the situation TOTALLY.

I have had no “usable” hearing in the right ear since my sudden hearing loss. The “dome” to retain the Cros unit is a solid plug, so no sound could enter the right ear anyway. Since I originaly posted the audiogram I have lost all hearing in my right ear. My hearing continues to worsen as the hearing specialist predicted. So the situation and conclusion TOTALLY hasn’t changed at all. Vic

So given the abilities one loses when an ear goes totally deaf, what benefit do you feel you derive from two aids?

Thanks for your insights vlackc.