To coincide with the 62nd International Congress of Hearing Aid Acousticians, the European Union of Hearing Aid Acousticians (EUHA) has published a new guideline entitled “Custom-made earmoulds for fitting hearing systems,” EUHA announced. It offers a structured and condensed survey of all relevant aspects related to custom-made earmolds, and can serve acousticians who wish to check and refresh their knowledge, according to EUHA. It is also suitable as a training guide and for advanced education, as it provides directions on the procedure as part of quality management.
According to EUHA, the guideline refers to the hearing aid acoustician’s routine. Every aspect of earmold manufacturing for fitting hearing systems is covered, ranging from the assessment of requirements and customer consultation, to casting and finishing, to the measurement of acoustic transmission, testing, and quality assurance.
Wolfgang Luber, a member of the EUHA Executive Committee, headed the expert group in charge of drawing up the guideline. Luber emphasises the relevance of custom-made earmolds: “Custom-made earmolds are indispensable requirements for professional hearing aid fitting. The benefit provided by innovative hearing systems is largely determined by an individually manufactured otoplastic. A professional approach to using earmolds and the different options associated with them is part of the hearing aid acoustician’s core competence.”
It has been said that otoplastics influence acoustic and auditory efficiency and are subject to medical considerations and the anatomy of the customer’s ears; their selection also depends on handling options and aesthetics.
The guideline “Custom-made earmoulds for fitting hearing systems” aims at establishing a consistent high-quality standard for sound delivery devices in hearing systems. It focuses on custom-made earmolds for air-conduction hearing systems and cochlear implants (BTE, bimodal, and EAS devices).
Several guidelines have been developed on the initiative of the EUHA. Issues such as wireless remote microphone systems, hearing protection, audio therapy in hearing aid acoustics, and percentile analysis have been tackled in the respective guidelines. Any of these guidelines are available for free download from: http://www.euha.org/guidelines/
Earmolds expert group:
Erich Bayer, master craftsman of hearing aid acoustics, Munich
Dipl.-Kfm. Dirk Köttgen, master craftsman of hearing aid acoustics, member of the EUHA Executive Committee, Cologne
Wolfgang Luber, master craftsman of hearing aid acoustics, member of the EUHA Executive Committee, Munich
Malte Roberz, master craftsman of hearing aid acoustics, Academy of Hearing Aid Acoustics, Lübeck
Ass. jur. Matthias Schober, biha, Mainz
Andreas Schwer, master craftsman of hearing aid acoustics, Kempten