Where to start looking for a CROS aid? New to hearing loss and hearing aids

Interesting!!! I also have commented to the audiologist that I would be interested in demo’ing a regular hearing aid as I feel like I can still hear somewhat in my bad ear. I think the CROS recommendation is based on my poor speech recognition in that ear (12%) but I question if my recognition improvement with the hearing aid might be greater than they think. The other thing I think that is driving the CROS recommendation is the idea that my left side is likely keep getting progressively worse because of the neuroma.

Is there a good way to know if I can hear at the frequencies you mention? I assumed that the hearing test results would reflect at what volumes I am able to hear a given frequency, but all of this is relatively new to me.

Right now I feel like there are too many moving parts on this decision between what the Audiologist sells, what my insurance will cover, and not having the ability to easily demo something.

Do you have any recommendations on how I can easily demo different solutions? If Costco allows demos, that would be worth the membership fee for me just to try out a regular hearing aid without starting the insurance paperwork - once insurance gets involved changing anything seems to be 1000% more difficult.

Thank you so much for taking the time to correspond with me on this, Sierra. You are amazing!

Sierra is amazing the way he whips up those simulations so fast.

Try this site with headphones. VOLUME DOWN! Then slowly up. Your right ear will dominate as you go up in frequency and then the left will come back in a titch…not much :slight_smile:
For me it’s like it ping pongs back and forth.

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That site that @z10user2 gave you is a good one. I have used it many times trying to figure out what my left ear is capable of. It is worse than yours, and I use standard hearing aids with an M receiver.

Here is another site that you can test your hearing with. If you use headphones you should be able to tell what frequencies you can hear in each ear.

You do have a good point if your hearing loss is progressing rapidly, it may only be a matter of time. It may be possible to get hearing aids that work in both ears initially but can be converted to CROS down the road. That is beyond my knowledge of what aids can do. That word recognition score could mean that you hear something in those frequencies but it is not pure enough to make out what it is.

At Costco you probably have to pay for the aids to do any length of trial away from the store. However it is easy to return them for a full refund. If you timed it right you could put them on a credit card and then return them before you have to pay the credit card. They may also be willing to give you some to try for a hour or so to walk around the store with them. If you do buy them and keep them for a while, I believe you have up to 6 months to return them for a full refund.

CROS/BiCROS sounds good on paper and in theory, but I had a less than stellar experience wearing it for ~2 years with a Signia Pure PX7 BiCROS setup. So much so, in fact, that I’m going back to a single hearing aid.

The main problem with CROS/BiCROS from my perspective is that the CROS receiver is just a dumb microphone and has almost none of the advanced features, filtering, or directionality of the actual hearing aid.

Even with lots of professional tuning, and then fine-tuning on my own at home, I was only able to get it to a level where one-on-one speech and passive omnidirectional speech (i.e. people just outside my office at work) were acceptable. However, actively talking to more than one person at a time quickly became overwhelming due to the limitations of CROS.

YMMV, maybe the tech has improved since I tried it. I just picked up my new Kirkland Signature 9 today…

FYI, the Costco version doesn’t support CROS. Only the regular Phonak Marvels do, but they are much more expensive.

At this time there is not a Phonak CROS for the Marvel platform. You would have to look at the Phonak CROS B for their Belong platform of hearing aids.

Might be of interest.65213UK_WP_Oticon_CROS.pdf (392.9 KB)

There is definitely a limit to what CROS can do. It is not going to help with directionality, and may in fact make it worse. What it can do is help you hear people right beside you on your bad hearing side. I have a friend that has single sided hearing and he simply cannot talk to you if you are on the wrong side.

I wear Phonak Audio B90 and wanted the Phonak Marvel but it doesn’t use a CROS which is what I wear. I haven’t had Bluetooth yet for streaming, but the B90 should take work as Audi said.

I have lost high frequency in my left ear and the CROS works just fine, I’m pleased with it.

If you get a hearing aid for the left ear, just get one that is CROS compatible. Then, if the left ear declines, you can flip that hearing aid over to the right ear and add the CROS onto the left, which is what would make up the CROS system anyway.

12% is suprisingly low for a loss like that. I think it’s worth trying the hearing aid, but sometimes neuromas just result in a very distorted sound.

Thank you all so much for your replies!!! Some updates on my situation:

I bought a Costco membership and went to their hearing aid center. The tech seemed very thorough in his evaluation and told me that, in 25 years of fitting hearing aids, he had never seen a case quite like mine. If he amplified the audio enough, I was able to increase my speech recognition score through that ear to something like 90% (and honestly everything sounded pretty clear to me, surprised I didn’t score 100%)- however it required amplification to 100+db. At this volume, I felt that I was hearing at a normal level but it also felt like my brain was buzzing from it and I had a general sense of something being wrong like my subconscious was trying to alert me that I was in discomfort even though I wasn’t feeling any physical pain.

Although it was nearing the end of the day, he quickly set up a Kirkland aid for me to try walking around the store and talking with my fiance (less than 2 weeks until I get married!) and I felt like it provided no real value - like it could not amplify enough to help. So, this is a bit of a disappointing result, but does provide some data and closure.

Going further, Ziphearing is unfortunately Out-of-Network for my insurance and would not qualify for any benefit… so I have re-engaged my original Audiologist. For a sanity check, I am still going to have her try out the regular aid first and then, most likely, go with the CROS solution. As @Neville suggested, I am going to get something that is CROS compatible and then have her switch it over to the other ear in the likely event I end up needing the CROS.

Out of the options she sells, I am going to go with the Oticon OPN S1, and then likely the Oticon CROS. Will also likely pick up the ConnectClip as that will allow bluetooth audio integration with my Android phone and I also like the idea that I can clip it onto someone in a noisy setting.

Thanks again to everyone who chimed in here. It really picked me up, even beyond just the informational value. Please let me know if you have any more thoughts on these updates =)

Was he masking out your right ear? With a 100+ dB presentation level he’d need to be putting a lot of noise into your right ear at the same time to eliminate the signal from crossing over to that ear.

Are your left ear thresholds still the same as what you have posted here? 100 dB is loud. Something seems off. Also, your’re not going to be doing that sort of amplification with a RIC, which rather throws off my suggestion of getting a CROS compatible RIC and then swapping sides.

Sorry taken me so long to get back here. Life.

Either way, I didn’t get much help from wearing the aids in the store even turned all the way up… the point has since gone moot as the hearing in my bad side has degraded much further and now I rarely feel like I am hearing anything on that side. On rare occasions I will feel like I hear something from that ear and it is almost startling.
I am living with CROS now… it’s works well enough to keep using it, though I don’t know if I would say it works well overall.

I wear Phonak Audio B90 morning to night with a CROS. I’m amazed the batteries last 12 days or more. I carry a spare always. I’m not interested in battery charger, your at the mercy of the charger time limit.
And buying batteries at Costco is the best place for price.

Hi Jayhovah, when you said “didn’t get much help”, was it because the sound/speech was so distorted that you couldn’t understand any conversations? Terrible background noise? I am struggling between hearing aid and CROS. My audiologist said any word recognition score below 50%, hearing aid will not help. I would love to hear your experience.

I’m not sure the aid got loud enough that I really felt like I could hear much from it. The tech turned the amplification all the way up, but I just didn’t feel like I was even picking up much from that ear.
During the testing, I could get word recognition to a good score in that ear, but it required HEAVY amplification.