Bestselling Book on Balance Function Released in 2nd Edition

Plural Publishing, based in San Diego, Calif, recently released the second edition of the book Balance Function Assessment and Management, edited by Gary Jacobson, PhD, and Neil Shepard, PhD. The second edition includes 7 new chapters and continues to comprehensively address the assessment and treatment of balance system impairments through contributions from top experts in the areas of dizziness and vertigo. Designed for use in graduate audiology programs and by practicing audiologists, this is also intended to be a valuable text for those in the fields of physical therapy, otolaryngology, and neurology.

book_BalanceFunctioncoverAssessment chapters focus on ocular motility testing, positional/positioning testing, caloric testing, rotational testing, computerized dynamic posturography, and vestibular evoked potentials. Treatment chapters examine non-medical, medical, and surgical treatments of dizziness and vertigo, vestibular rehabilitation, and assessment of and intervention for risk of falls. According to the publishers, this revised edition also provides background information on the vestibular and ocular motor systems with corresponding sample cases.

New topics addressed in this edition include:

  • Development of the vestibular system
  • Central compensation following peripheral vestibular system impairment
  • Video head impulse test (vHIT)
  • Biomechanics and physiology of balance
  • Electrocochleography (ECochG)
  • Pediatric vestibular system and balance assessment
  • Effects of age on the vestibular and balance systems

An added bonus to the second edition is the PluralPlus companion website that offers additional reference materials, such as video clips, associated with the text. The second edition is available for sale as a hardcover book on the Plural Publishing website. It has 904 pages, includes 378 illustrations, and retails for $ 165.

Source: Plural Publishing

Article source: http://www.hearingreview.com/2015/01/bestselling-book-balance-function-releases-second-edition/

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Beltone Announces Android-compatible App for Hearing Aids

Beltone Boost

Beltone Boost hearing aid.

Beltone, Chicago, Ill, has announced that its HearPlus app is now Android-compatible, and works with the company’s Beltone First and Beltone Boost hearing aids. According to the announcement, the Beltone HearPlus app allows users to easily and discreetly tailor their hearing experience to match their personal preferences and accommodate to their listening environment.

Initially compatible with the Samsung Galaxy S5, currently one of the most popular Android smart phones, Beltone’s hearing aids will reportedly expand to include other Android devices later in 2015.

Beltone accessories

Beltone wireless accessories.

The Beltone HearPlus app for Android allows users to set preferred volume levels, adjust treble and bass settings, geo-tag frequently visited places, automatically update profiles, and adjust to specific acoustics. HearPlus also allows Android users to employ the ‘Finder’ function to pinpoint hearing aids if misplaced, and check hearing aid battery levels. Beltone HearPlus for Android is available for download on Google Play™ in February 2015.

The company’s Beltone First and Beltone Boost hearing aids are already both compatible with the iPhone and other Apple iOS devices (iPad® and iPod touch®).

“We are thrilled to give iPhone users and now Android users access to the same discreet and customized hearing experience,” said Todd Murray, president of Beltone. “We are constantly striving to improve our technologies and give even more people the ability to improve their hearing experience and overall quality of life. Our entry into the Android market is the latest evidence of that commitment.” 

Beltone Hearing Aid Honored with Edison Award Nomination

In other news from Beltone, the company reported that its Beltone Boost was nominated for a 2015 Edison Award in the Lifestyle and Social Impact category. According to announcement, the Edison Awards is an annual competition designed to honor excellence in new product and service development, marketing, human-centered design, and innovation. Winners, who are announced at the Annual Edison Awards Ceremony and Gala in late April, represent “game changing” products, services, and leadership around four criteria: Concept, Value, Delivery, and Impact.

For more information about the Beltone HearPlus app and wireless products, visit the Beltone website.

Source: Beltone

Article source: http://www.hearingreview.com/2015/01/beltone-announces-android-compatible-hearing-aid/

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NPR Broadcast Celebrates Audiology Great Marion Downs

Marion Downs

Marion Downs working with a hearing-impaired child.

National Public Radio (NPR) celebrated audiology legend Marion Downs with a December 28, 2014 broadcast by producer Becky Sullivan on its “All Things Considered” program. Marion Downs, who passed away in November 2014 at the age of 100, was a noted pediatric audiologist who advocated for newborns to be screened for hearing loss soon after birth.

NPR’s broadcast covers many highlights of Downs’ extraordinary life and career, including her audiology training, which began just after World War II. The radio broadcast and accompanying article on the NPR website recount how, in the early 1960s, Downs started testing newborns herself with horns and rattles. Many within the hearing industry already know that Downs had spent years pushing for early intervention for infants with hearing loss, because she believed critical language development occurs in early childhood. The NPR story relays how she spent much of her career visiting pediatricians and audiologists across the country, urging them to screen newborns. Eventually, technology was developed that made universal screening easier and more affordable.

To listen to the broadcast about this audiology pioneer, follow the NPR audio link, or visit the NPR website.

For more on Marion Downs, please see the November 13, 2014 article in The Hearing Review.

Source: NPR

Photo credit: Marion Downs Center

Article source: http://www.hearingreview.com/2015/01/npr-broadcast-celebrated-audiology-great-marion-downs/

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Dr. Jeff Hersh: Tinnitus is a symptom, not a disease


By Dr. Jeff Hersh
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Posted Mar. 13, 2014 @ 12:32 am


Article source: http://dighton.wickedlocal.com/article/20140313/News/140318341

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Notch Pathway Finding May Lead to Hearing Restoration

“A high level of Notch activity prevents progenitor cell division and hair cell regeneration in the postnatal inner ear,” said Zhen-Yi Chen, PhD, of the Eaton-Peabody Laboratories at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, and Associate Professor of Otology and Laryngology at Harvard Medical School. “It is known that inhibition of Notch activity can convert inner ear supporting cells to hair cells. In this paper, we have shown that Notch inhibition also promotes cell division. Under the condition, the inner ear progenitor cells re-enter cell division to regenerate hair cells in postnatal cochlea.”

The researchers showed in their study that Notch inhibition initiates proliferation of supporting cells that give rise to new hair cells in postnatal mouse cochlea in vivo and in vitro. Through lineage tracing, they identified that a majority of the proliferating supporting cells and cell division-generated hair cells induced by Notch inhibition are originated from the Wnt-responsive leucine-rich repeat-containing G protein coupled receptor 5 (Lgr5+) progenitor cells. They demonstrated that Notch inhibition removes the brakes on the canonical Wnt signaling and promotes Lgr5+ progenitor cells to mitotically generate new hair cells.

Dr Chen says that this study provides a potential route for blocking Notch activity to increase progenitor cell population by cell division, and to regenerate new hair cells. According to Dr Chen, their work could lead to developing new strategies to achieve hair cell regeneration for hearing restoration.

Source: Eaton-Peabody Laboratories at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, Harvard Medical School, and PNAS

 

Article source: http://www.hearingreview.com/2014/12/notch-pathway-finding-may-lead-hearing-restoration/

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Dr. Jeff Hersh: Tinnitus is a symptom, not a disease


By Dr. Jeff Hersh
More Content Now


Posted Mar. 13, 2014 @ 12:32 am


Article source: http://medford.wickedlocal.com/article/20140313/NEWS/140318341/1636/LIFESTYLE

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Study Leads to Promising Therapy for Rare Balance Disorder

Researchers at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai have developed a treatment for people who suffer from Mal de Debarquement Syndrome (MdDS), a rare but debilitating balance disorder. According to a study report, published online in the July 2014 issue of Frontiers in Neurology, MdDS is caused by a malfunctioning of the vestibule-ocular reflex (VOR), a mechanism in the inner ear that maintains balance and stabilizes the eyes during head movements. The new treatment developed by the research team at Mount Sinai works by re-adapting the VOR mechanism in patients with MdDS.

According to the study, people who suffer from MdDS can experience sensations of bobbing and swaying or sea sickness long after a sailing or boating excursion has ended. The symptoms of MdDS, which can reportedly last for months or years, include poor coordination, insomnia, headaches, anxiety, and depression. There has been no effective treatment for MdDS until now.

“Our study has provided the first effective treatment for this troublesome disorder, and we hope it provides relief to the thousands of people who may be affected worldwide,” said Bernard Cohen, MD, the Morris Bender Professor of Neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

A study subject with MdDS being treated in the Mount Sinai study.

A study subject with MdDS being treated in the Mount Sinai study.

The treatment developed by Dr Cohen, Mingjia Dai, PhD, and colleagues, re-adapts the VOR by moving the visual surroundings as the head is slowly rolled from side to side at the same frequency as the subject’s symptomatic rocking, swaying or bobbing.  In the study, the head roll caused vertical eye movements (nystagmus), and subjects tended to turn to one side when marching in place. Subjects were rocked or swayed at about one cycle per five seconds as they viewed a moving pattern of stripes.

The research team found that three to five treatments a day for one week were sufficient to produce a cure, and the movements and associated symptoms disappeared. Side effects of the treatments were reported as negligible. Of the 24 subjects that were treated in this study, 75% reported either a complete or substantial recovery during the one year post-treatment follow-up period. Although six subjects in the study reportedly had only transient improvement of symptoms, and one subject in the study did not respond to treatment, Dr Cohen feels the study results were promising.

“The work of our team also opens up a new area of research on how the Vestibulo-Ocular Reflex can produce head and body oscillations, and may eventually provide insight into other brain diseases that cause repetitive shaking and tremor of the head and body,” Dr Cohen said.

Mal de Debarquement Syndrome (MdDS) reportedly occurs in only a small fraction of those who experience Mal de Debarquement, and has been classified as a rare, disabling disease by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Exact estimates of its prevalence are not available, but it is possible that there are hundreds of people with this syndrome in the United States and thousands worldwide, according to Dr Cohen.

Mingjia Dai, PhD, assistant professor of neurology, worked closely with Dr Cohen to develop the treatment, treated the subjects, and led the group at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Co-collaborators in the study included Catherine Cho, MD, MSCR, assistant professor of neurology in the Eye Movement and Vertigo Program, and Eric Smouha, MD, associate professor of otolaryngology, and director of Otology-Neurotology. The study was supported by a grant from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD).

Source: Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai, and the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)

Photo Credits: © Andreas Karelias | Dreamstime.com; Mingjia Dai, PhD

Article source: http://www.hearingreview.com/2014/12/study-leads-promising-therapy-balance-disorder/

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