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Oticon Sumo DM Hearing Aid Designed For Severe-to-Profound Hearing Loss

Mini-Interview with Gordon Wilson, VP Marketing, Oticon.
Topic: SUMO DM: Amplification for Severe-to-Profound Hearing Loss

Beck: Good morning Gordon. Thanks for your time this morning.

Wilson: Hi Doug.

Beck: Gordon, for the readers who may not be familiar with you, Id like to mention that you earned your MBA from the University of New South Wales in Australia, and moved to Denmark and joined Oticon in 1991. Since that time youve been a Director of Product Development and are now the Vice President of Marketing for Oticon, here in the USA.

Wilson: Yes, that sounds about right.

Beck: OK, and I know you only have a few moments, so if you dont mind, well jump right in. Please tell me about the Sumo DM? What does the DM Stand for?

Wilson: DM stands for Digital Master. The Sumo DM is the newest Sumo product. Its a very flexible and very powerful digital hearing aid, newly designed for adults and children in the severe-to-profound hearing loss range. The major objective for the original Sumo was maximal power in an analog system, whereas the DM model is a very high power, completely digital instrument. The MPO is 140 dB and it has a peak gain of 82 dB.

Beck: Thats very impressive. And I would guess that it is a BTE model only and takes a 675 battery?

Wilson: Thats right. But I should note that of the full size 675 power BTEs on the market, the Sumo DM is the smallest, and thats an important feature for so many people.

Beck: I agree. Cosmetics are very important, and its great to see full size BTEs intentionally designed to have less visibility. What about the circuit?

Wilson: The Oticon Sumo DM hearing aid is an 8 channel device. Its built on the Syncro platform, so advanced circuitry, flexibility and power are the keys to this instrument. The Sumo DM has the Tri-State Noise Management system and Dynamic Feedback Cancellation and other innovative features, all of which are very important for the severe-to-profound hearing impaired population. The Sumo DM offers a high resolution fitting, based on three input levels, soft, medium and loud to maximize the use of the residual hearing.

Sumo DM also features Identities, to improve the immediate sound satisfaction of this varied group of clients. Identities allows the client to be fit with the most appropriate degree of compression and noise management settings right off the bat, based on his or her residual hearing, auditory resolution and sound preferences. Identities are also an excellent tool to upgrade experienced users of linear instruments to gradually change from their previous linear fitting to progressively more compression over a selected period of time.

Beck: How does the Sumo DM perform in noise?

Wilson: The Sumo DM performs very well in noise. Its one benefit of the instrument that users comment on first. The voice activated noise management system is dynamic and allows the patient to be comfortable in noise. One key is that when there is no speech sound present, the circuit maximally attenuates the noise. But when speech is present in particular bands, the attenuation is speech weighted to preserve speech cues. So the patient perceives less noise, more speech and improved comfort. Additionally, the feedback cancellation system allows a full spectrum of sound to be delivered without a reduction in gain.

To help clients and families understand these systems, Sumo DM has a Live view in the software that gives a real-time,visual representation of the changes made by Sumo DM, .Thats so useful for the audiologist to counsel the client to better understand exactly how the device is performing in different environments.

Beck: Those features really do help when youre trying to provide audible and comfortable amplification in difficult-to-fit situations, without exceeding the patients tolerance levels. Gordon, in addition to the identified target population (severe-to-profound) it seems the Sumo DM would be the instrument of choice for the contralateral ear of many cochlear implant (CI) patients?

Wilson: Thats right, we recommend that application, too. Because you can get such a tremendous amount of gain from this instrument, particularly in the low frequencies, it is very useful for some CI patients and serves to fill in the low frequencies for the patient while wearing their CIs for listening to music and for conversational speech.

Beck: Do these instruments work with the Lexis FM?

Wilson: Yes. Lexis offers a dedicated FM receiver for use with the Sumo DM, which interlocks with the instrument so it cant fall off. This interlocking design connects the receiver through the battery door and prevents loss of this valuable accessory. Sumo DM also has an interlocking FM adaptor boot that makes it compatible with all wireless FM receivers.

Beck: Thats great. I know Ive had FM boots fall off, and they are expensive to replace and hard to find! Thanks so much for your time today, Gordon.

Wilson: My pleasure, Doug. Thanks for your interest.


Clcik here for more information on Oticon Hearing Aids.

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