Deafness Treated Through Teeth?
The Food and Drug Administration in January approved the SoundBite system, a device that restores single-sided deafness.
The SoundBite Hearing System is the world’s first non-surgical and removable hearing solution to use the well-established principle of bone conduction to imperceptibly transmit sound via the teeth. It is intended to help patients who suffer from Single Sided Deafness or Conductive Hearing Loss rejoin the conversation of life.
The device was invented by Amir Abolfathi of Sonitus Medical, Michael Murray, M.D., an ear, nose and throat physician and Gerald R. Popelka, Ph.D, who is professor of head and neck surgery at Stanford University.
How SoundBite Imperceptibly Transmits Sound
Your own outer ear has natural acoustic benefits as it effectively collects and channels sound from the environment into the ear canal. To take advantage of this, a tiny microphone is placed within the canal of the impaired ear and is connected by a nearly invisible tube to the BTE.
The BTE uses a digital signal processor to process the sound and a wireless chip to transmit the sound signals to the ITM. Once the ITM picks up the signals, it in turn converts them into imperceptible sound vibrations that travel via the teeth, through bone, and to your cochlea, nearly simultaneously. In this way, sound is re-routed from your impaired ear directly to your good cochlea – bypassing the middle and outer ear entirely – to effectively restore the perception of hearing from your impaired ear.
To view a video of this new product visit www.soundbitehearing.com