Oticon Alta

Newborn Hearing Testing in the Himalayas

Audiologist Aysen Erdil does a lot of voluntary work in Turkey using Interacoustics equipment. In 2004 she tested children in Turkish schools and in the fall of 2006 she will be testing children and babies in small villages on the Turkish border. Therefore, it was not unusual for her to decide on testing babies' hearing in Nepal while trekking in the Himalayas in early 2006.

Testing Sherpa babies 5140 meters above sea level

While trekking in the Himalayas with a friend, the Turkish audiologist Aysen Erdil brought along an OtoRead OAE screener from Interacoustics. Whenever she found a baby on her way she checked its hearing. It was minus 20 degrees Celsius at night, so I had to keep the OtoRead with me in my sleeping bag in the tent, she explains.

The baby in the picture was a 23 day old boy of the Sherpa people whom Aysen Erdil tested. He passed the OAE screening on both ears, which naturally made his mother very happy.


The picture was taken at Gorak Shep 5140m above sea level, the highest point in the world with a settlement. The Sherpa are the local people who live in Solu Khumbu Valley in the Himalayas.

Increasing awareness of newborn hearing screening in Nepal

A national hearing screening program is already in place in Turkey. In fact, the hospital where Aysen Erdil works is in a leading position on this matter. Therefore, she wanted to demonstrate the OAE screener to her Nepalese colleagues. On her way from to Gorak Shep (near Everest Base Camp) Aysen Erdil visited the hospitals at Lukla, 2840m ASL, and at Namche Pazar, 3440m ASL.

Voluntary work inspired by Medecins sans frontieres

Each year Aysen Erdil does voluntary work for one week in remote parts of Turkey inspired by the work of "Medecins sans frontieres.

The Interacoustics distributor in Turkey, Erisci, always helps her by supplying the necessary equipment, which was MT10 last year and the OtoRead this spring. The picture below was taken in 2004 when Aysen Erdil was testing with the MT10 middle ear analyzer at a school in Damal, a tiny village in far-east Turkey.

This September (2006) she and a group of voluntary doctors are going to visit 14 small villages on both sides of the Turkish and Georgian border to test children and babies.

Source: Aysen Erdil holds a BA in psychology and a MSc. in audiology. She has worked at the Hacettepe University Hospital in Ankara and now works for Amerikan Hastanesi in Istanbul, a non-profit general hospital. It is owned by a private foundation and this year is its 86th birthday.

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