A MedTech West seminar: Bone conduction hearing projects at Chalmers 1977-2015

Welcome to a new MedTech West seminar on March 17. The seminar is presented by Bo Håkansson, professor and leader of the Biomedical signals and systems research group at Chalmers University of Technology.

Back in 1977, professor Brånemark at Gothenburg University and professor Tjellström at the ENT department at Sahlgrenska University hospital installed the first skin penetrating abutments in three patients with severe hearing loss due to chronic ear infections. These patients had previously needed conventional bone conduction hearing devices that was ugly to wear and that had a poor sound quality mainly due to the dampening effect of the skin – they were regarded as a last resort only used if nothing else could help. The idea with the new device was that the skin penetrating abutment should improve the bone conduction transmission to the skull bone and improve the wearing comfort for these patients. These new device were early named, the Bone Anchored Hearing Aid (BAHA).

This was the starting point for a long and intensive research at Department of Applied Electronics (later merged into Department of Signals and Systems) with the purpose to develop sound processors, transducers (speakers) and other related equipment necessary for the BAHA to become clinically available.

Today the BAHA has been successfully developed and is used by more than 150 000 patients worldwide. Beside the BAHA system some other applications has been developed by the collaborating research groups including communication headsets, audiometric bone conductors (B81) and a transcutaneous Bone Conduction Implant (BCI). The BCI is a recent and promising development of the BAHA where the skin can be kept intact by implanting the transducer under the skin and transmitting the sound wirelessly.

This presentation will include the most important technical developments from the start 1977 until today. Also the most important basic bone conduction physiology findings over these years will be presented.

Date: March 17, 2015
Time: 13:00-14.00
Room: Stammen, Blå stråket 6, Sahlgrenska University Hospital

Register by sending an email to seminars@medtechwest.se. Please write “MTW seminar March 17″ in the subject line.