Hello everyone – it’s been several years since I’ve been on the forum. It’s been a challenging few years with several surgeries (non-hearing related) and finally a decision to retire.
I’m now 70, but very active in several community and non-profit organizations. I’ve worn hearing aids for approx. 20 years, and for the past 4 ½ years worn the Phonak Boleros. Over the past two years I’ve noticed a significant drop in my hearing, specifically speech, although my word discrimination scores didn’t indicate much change over 4 years. (signature shows 2012 and 2016 audiogram results). I am on antibiotic doxycycline, probably forever, and don’t know if that is contributing to the hearing decline, as well as a blood pressure med. My original audiologist, whom I liked and trusted very much also retired, so I have a different audiologist. Late 2016 I went to the ENT doctor at the office with a follow-up with the audiologist. I explained my decline in hearing, and was told that no, my hearing was basically the same! (what?). So, of course I was frustrated. I decided to see another audiologist next week – one recommended by my original audiologist.
Like most hearing impaired, I can get very frustrated – especially in some of the meetings I attend where I cannot understand anything that is being said. And, most people think that when I have them repeat something they think it’s because they weren’t loud enough – that’s not the case, it is really clarity of what is being said. Yes, there are those environments where ambient noise around me is an issue. The only thing I can hear clearly is the TV – thru the Phonak Compilot/TV link – that’s perfectly clear! I also have the little remote mic that I’ve tried to use in meetings, but that’s not helping much. BTW – I don’t mind wearing the blue tooth ‘necklace’, so have BT in the aid is no big deal for me, nor a requirement.
The Boleros are 4 ½ years old, and perhaps they are at end of life? Has technology improved over the past 4 years? Given my word discrimination scores, are there newer aids that perhaps would be better suited for me? I did a bit of research on the Signia Primax series, but nothing else yet. At what point is cochlear implants an option? I’ll meet with the new audiologist next week and go in with a positive attitude, and will do as much research as I can prior to my appointment. (I do tend to over analyze most things )