Friday, March 3, 2017

Happy World Hearing Day!

Being an audiologist, I would drag my husband to do a hearing test whenever he doesn't listen to me. And each time, he proved me wrong which really shows what a difference it is between hearing and listening 😒.
But seriously, it's really a practice for healthy hearing, and this is what it somewhat looks like when you do a hearing test in a soundproof room. It's not scary at all, and the audiologist is usually all ears! If you would do a health check up for your body, why wouldn't you do a hearing check while you're at it? It's not really about finding a problem, but ensuring you're optimizing your full body potentials.
So do me a favour please, get yourself/your parents/your spouse/your children/your siblings/your relatives a hearing test today (or anytime soon)! Unaddressed hearing loss has a high cost, let's take action before it's costing us! Don't know where to go? E-mail me and I'll hook you up with an audiologist.
Happy World Hearing Day! (3.3)

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

International Cochlear Implant Day

Learned two things about cochlear implants this week, and it wasn't even Wednesday yet!
One: Happy International Cochlear Implant Day! Well, not today, but on the 25th of February. I won't be blogging on a Saturday (for now) so that's why I'm wishing it today! Apparently it has been celebrated since 2005; I definitely missed that train! Or maybe I knew and forgot about it? Anyway. The Spanish Association of Cochlear Implants initiated this special day to commemorate the exact date back in 1957 when two doctors, Djourno and Eyres, electrically stimulate the auditory nerve by placing an electrode outside the cochlear. 21 years later, Dr. Graeme Clark picked up where the Frenchmen left off and conducted the first ever cochlear implant. And the rest, as they say, is history. Thanks to the International Cochlear Implant Day fb page where I got all this info!
On to the local scene, Malaysia had its first ever cochlear recipient back in 1995! Since then the number of cochlear implant recipients has been growing rapidly throughout the country. National University of Malaysia (UKM) has the most/longest established CI program in the nation, and currently it is run by Institute-HEARS. Find more details about HEARS on their website or facebook page.
Two: I learned about Kanso, Cochlear's new product! I thought it is amazing! Just look at it:
Say goodbye to cables and BTE processors! It is all in one device as small as that! I was so fascinated with it when the Cochlear rep showed it to me. Kanso uses two small batteries (like HA size 675 batts - this could be their limitation though, it lasts only for a few days and not rechargeable. But I'm sure they'll figure something out to overcome that limitation). It's mapping cable is like the HA cable, very tiny (not like the implant batt size as before). The processing chips! Man, how do they reduce all those to fit into Kanso? It has it's water-proof casing for swimming (something or the other, didn't really ask in detail on that) and it's supposed to be sweat-friendly (I was asking how it fares with humidity).
I am not promoting this brand but more of the technology in particular. I love how human brains as gifted by Allah are so amazing to be able to think all this. This would be so appealing to the mass population, and it's exciting to know what more the future will offer for hearing health. But at the same time, audiologists will have to step up! Before long, we may not be needed at all! Erk. Fellow audiologists, let's take that as a challenge, and remember, the human touch always go a long way. :)

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Ida Institute - great site for aural rehabilitation reference, among others

I was first introduced to Ida Institute in my aural rehabilitation lecture by Angela Marshall, during my master's course. Since then other lecturers and clinical supervisors repeatedly encourage to look up this website as well because Ida Institute have amazing tools and information that would benefit any clinician. In fact, I myself have been subscribing to this, and it is really an interesting site: they have forums, reviews, ideas for clinics, and the list goes on. I wouldn't want to keep it all to myself, so if you have the chance, check it out! Or better yet, subscribe to their mailing list. Happy learning! :)

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Wishing for a naturally good hearing... so legitly real yet underrated.

"I would love not to have small children go shy and silent when their mommy tells them, “You have to get the attention of Gigi (short for Grandma Gael) before you speak to her. And face her. And speak up.” What 2 ½ year old is going to say anything after that?!"
It doesn't even have to be small children, even adults go silent if I tell someone has a hearing impairment. They just don't know what to do/react!
Read the full article here, by Gael Hannan, Editor of Hearing Health at HearingHealthMatters.org, as posted in March 2016.
Now. Which favours of your Lord will you deny? (Ar-Rahman)

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Audiologist featured in Queen of the Deen

I am very proud of this superwoman of an audiologist. I got to know her through this very blog when I was doing my undergrad and she was doing her AuD in UK. Fast forward, she has started her own thing, expanding with a few branches now, and reaching out to the masses with her ever charming personality. Meet Dr Shasa Aziz of Eartistic Hearing & Balance Centre as featured on Dops TV in an interview with MizzNina.






Wednesday, January 25, 2017

ENT Clinic of the shortest waiting list ever!

I could not contain myself when I found out about this: a visiting ENT Clinic at KASP!!!!!
Not sure when it all started but basically there are three days when the Klinik Audiologi dan Sains Pertuturan UKM hosts a visiting ENT Specialist: Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. What's the fuss is all about, you say? Well let me break it down for ya.
1. To see an ENT Specialist, let alone a specialist at a public centre usually takes agesssss. There is a long waiting list, and come appointment day, you still have to wait for hourssss (maybe I'm exaggerating a little bit but at some places it is true). Sometimes even seeing a private Specialist takes time too, because they can get quite busy. I mean, they are not just seeing people with ear problems, but also the nose, and throat; so don't go expecting they attend to one part of the body only.
2. Why pay more?
Would you believe that it's only RM53 (GST included) to get the consultation of this visiting Specialist?! And follow ups are only at RM31.80 per session! Tell me you're screaming "NO FRIGGIN' WAY!" right now because that was what I said when I found out. Of course you need a referral letter; once you have that just make the call and they'll put you on the almost non-existent waiting list and before long, they'll book you in!
FOC for government staffs (with GL); school/college/university students (with letter from the institution); pensioners (with card); OKU (with card); and senior citizens (with MyKad)
3. They do ear toilets too! From RM10.60! Out of this world. If you're not sure what ear toilet means. Google it. I'm just joking, what's the use of my blog if I don't talk about it? Basically anyone who has a blocked ear goes through ear toilet where they clean the ears for you. Sometimes it takes more than a visit, because you may have dead-hard wax that just won't come out at first tug. Highly recommended for those who gets in trouble for always pushing their wax in with the cotton buds (Big NO NO).
4. Read my previous post about the Klinik Audiologi dan Sains Pertuturan.
5. The ENT Specialists are from PPUKM. Experienced medical professionals. I would write their names but I won't just in case when you read this they're no longer visiting and it's a different specialist. Plus, they have an in-house medical assistant, audiologists, speech therapists, relevant professionals... This ain't some dodgy clinic guys!
Curious? Have queries? Give the clinic a call! 03-9289 5040/5041.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Where Can I Do a Hearing Test in KL?

I know a lot of people are not aware of this top-notch hearing assessment facility right in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. Not the General Hospital. Not one of the many private hospitals in Kuala Lumpur. This particular clinic is secluded near to the beautiful Titiwangsa Lake, and also near to the opening-soon Klinik Kesihatan Kuala Lumpur. It is none other than Klinik Audiologi dan Sains Pertuturan (KASP) of Health Science Faculty, UKM, Kuala Lumpur campus.
It is open to the public, but no walk-ins. Appointments by bookings only and to do so, make sure you have a referral letter (from a medical practitioner, be it public or private) with you.
So with that letter in hand, you give a call to the clinic’s reception at 03-92895040/ 5041, anytime between 8am to 5.30pm during weekdays. Bear in mind though, this is a teaching facility, so most likely you will be seen by a student, especially if your appointment is in the morning. BUT an experienced clinician will supervise that student, so you’re in good hands really. First appointment starts at 9am and the last appointment at 3.30pm. If you INSIST on seeing a clinician and not a student, feel free to be on the waiting list. But it shouldn’t take you months to be seen. If you ask me, two heads are better than one, and wouldn’t you just love the opportunity to bully a student? :D Unless of course, you have a real issue and you might want a serious, experienced head to look into it.
What happens in the appointment? Each appointment takes up to one hour, depending on the complexity. First appointment is usually the hearing assessment, which typically is the audiometric test where you will get an audiogram/ chart indicating your hearing levels. Audiologist will then advise you what to do next. If you need hearing aids, typically it would require you a follow up appointment.
HOW MUCH?! Flat rate for babies up to adults. Non-government employees have to pay RM61.80 (including GST) for the first appointment, and subsequent appointments (if necessary) cost RM31.80 per session. For government staffs, ensure that you have a hard copy of a Guarantee Letter (GL) from your HR (I guess?) for a free assessment.
OKU individuals, pensioners and senior citizens get this service FOC. But don’t rock up to the clinic empty-handed; bring the referral letter and your OKU/pensioner card please! Oh, and local students with a letter from the school (not medical doctor) don’t have to pay for the service as well.
The clinic is well set-up (remember, it’s a teaching facility so they have everything!). Location is in the heart of KL so easily accessible. Parking is abundant and free. And it’s not busy with people. I mean, you don’t even have to be a person with hearing impairment to come and have your hearing assessed, it’s always good to get a baseline audiogram! Or if you have been worried about your parents’ hearing but don’t want to spend so much on the initial test, or be pressured to get a hearing aid (this clinic is not profit-oriented), KASP is THE place to go.
So what are you waiting for? Get that referral letter and make that appointment now ☺
PS: I might just do YOUR hearing test ☺
PPS: Speech assessments are a bit more complex. Call them for any enquiries for speech therapy etc.
PPPS: non-Malaysians can book an appointment too! You just have to pay a little bit more.