Ask the Audiologist

History

We are proud of our long history of helping people with hearing loss. I first started practicing as an audiologist in 1968 in a clinic in Virginia. After that I was director of audiology at the Easter Seals facility in Maryland where we worked with children and adults who had a variety of communication problems. In 1984 I joined with an ENT in opening the Hearing Center, Inc in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, DC .

I became sole owner of the Hearing Center, Inc in 1988 and eventually owned four hearing centers in three different cities in Maryland. In 2002 I was diagnosed with cancer and was unable to continue at the pace required for such a dynamic practice so I sold my practice to an international hearing aid sales organization (Sonus) that focused on providing the best of care from a network of offices all over the country. They also offer a variety of brands of hearing aids and thus can honestly provide hearing aids to match just about any type of loss.

At the time of the sale, we had five audiologists and two licensed hearing instrument specialists on our staff, as well as front and back office people, and usually an audiology graduate student or two. We had two large sound suites in our main office, one with double walls for very quiet testing, and one sound suite in each of our other offices, plus Assistive Listening Device Demo setups, hearing aid programming rooms, cerumen (ear wax) management stations, and labs for repairing hearing aids.

We had specialized computers for hearing aid programming, Otoacoustic Emissions (OAE) testing, and for verifying hearing aid performance in the ear ("real ear"). One of our most useful pieces of equipment was an ultraviolet curing system for making major repairs to hearing aid cases. Of course, we also had the traditional audiology equipment, such as otoscopes, audiometers and tympanometers. One gadget that our patients liked was our video otoscopes, that allows patients to see inside their own ears.

The new owners of my offices added more equipment and specialized training for the staff, and should be able to support the patients with high quality care.

As far as I am concerned, the heart of The Hearing Center was its patients. These wonderful people range from movie stars and major league baseball celebrities to friends and neighbors whose concerns require lots of personal attention.

Our youngest patient was just hours old for his first hearing test and the oldest so far is 106 years young. We routinely tested infants and children, with an excellent degree of success. Since our computerized bookkeeping system was installed in 1989, we served over seventeen thousand different people, many of whom have become lifelong friends.

We are proud of our accomplishments, our people, and our facilities. Paramount however, is the satisfaction of having had an opportunity to make a difference in peoples' lives.

We hope to continue that tradition with this web page, helping answer your questions and explaining how the various hearing aids work, allowing you to compare the different offerings available to you.

Solveig