A patient’s story:
My name is Rebecca Smith and I was born with a condition that is very rare (affecting 1 in 40,000). It is called Klippel-Feil Syndrome. It affects predominately my neck spine, my mobility and my ears. From birth my neck is much shorter than it should be with webbing at either side of it and my head is held slightly to my right. X-rays showed a massive fusion of all the 7 vertebrae of my neck, except for 1 small area where I have slight movement so I was never able to look over my shoulder or extend my neck at all. Also from birth I have deafness in both ears, profound deafness in the left and moderate loss in the right.
During all my child and adult life, despite having bad ear infections and a perforated left ear drum I was very happy with my NHS Analogue Hearing Aids. I could hear sounds loudly, clearly and comfortably – it felt just like normal hearing. My hearing aids were like my best friend and helped me to overcome my insecurities about the negative effect of my neck on my life. I panicked whenever I thought I’d lost them around the house! Then the change over to Digital took place and the NHS Digitals I tried were just awful. Sounds were bad quality, distorted and changed constantly in different surroundings. I felt dizzy and disorientated. I continued hearing Analogues until they eventually stopped working. I had 2 of the last batch of NHS Analogues from about 12-14 years ago. They had lasted such long time and that is another advantage of using Analogues – they last ages!
Last summer, with no Analogues that worked properly I found an Audiologist who said he stocked the old Analogue type. But I was very disappointed when he more or less said he would only sell me Digitals at a too expensive price for me: £600-£1000 or over! I felt disillusioned and depressed because I missed my Analogues so much. I was struggling with no aids at all. I didn’t think I’d find any Audiologists who would help. Then I discovered R.J. Donnan Hearing Care, based at Oswaldtwistle Mills. Right away I felt comfortable and at ease, with Rob and May. Rob gave me some very good advice for ear care as well as for hearing aids; he explained that I may be able to have my perforated ear drum mended, which in the past no one else had mentioned. And I have now got an appointment with E.N.T clinic to learn more about that, thanks to Rob, the Senior Audiologist. He was very caring, kind, empathetic, understanding, patient and nothing was too much trouble. He tried me on a 7 days trial of Phonak Naida I UP Digitals Aids. He bore in mind that I liked the behind-the-ear types first and although they weren’t suitable or right for me, Rob was very understanding and really listened to every word I said. Next time I saw him, I couldn’t believe my eyes! Rob had found me on Analogue Hearing Aid! Analogues have been discontinued about 10-14 years ago and as I had researched on the Internet – Hundreds of people still love Analogues but cannot buy them anywhere. Even in America a lot of previous users of Analogues cannot adjust to Digitals and have suffered psychologically and physically from having no alternative to Digital Hearing Aids.
I had tried Audiologists around my area and every single one of them didn’t want to know about Analogues. Rob is the only Audiologist I’ve met who cares about people! Not just the newest Digital Hearing Aids. And he will work as hard as it takes to find the best hearing aids to suit you. He will always invest his time into making you as happy and as suited to your new hearing aids and you don’t pay a penny until you are entirely satisfied. No stress, pressure selling or hassle! Rob’s Analogue Hearing Aid which I now own is a FEIE 209. It has only cost me £295 – that’s including a beautiful hearing aid mould of the highest quality, which actually moulds itself snugly inside the ear. It is the most comfortable ear mould I have ever worn and I am confident that there is no feedback sounds as the mould is such on excellent fitting. Comparing that cost to £600 –£1000 over from other Audiologists! Nothing compares to Rob at R.J. Donnan Hearing Care. Rob has a passion for wonderful customer service and amazing prices, he really doesn’t sell hearing aids just because they are the most expensive or the latest technology. He offers you great support and the best hearing care for you. And for other Analogue lovers, Robert Donnan Hearing Care at Oswaldtwistle Mills is definitely your home. I am now receiving excellent free after care and appointments are always available anytime.
I’m so glad that I have found Rob and I’ve finally found the support I so badly needed.
Rebecca Smith, Lancashire 31.01.16
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