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Audiology Masterclass Series 2022

A wide range of topics related to audiology, education and support for clients who are Deaf or hard of hearing.
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Key Details

Masterclass Series
Course Code
Start Date
2 December 2023

Course Information

Audiology Masterclass Series 2022

Session 1: Why music is a powerful (re)habilitation tool for children who are deaf and hard-of-hearing

Presented by: Chi Lo

This presentation explores the benefits of music for children who are deaf and hard-of-hearing (DHH). Music is often viewed as a higher-order auditory activity which may serve as a barrier to participation. However, this workshop will explore how music is a rich and powerful multi-modal activity, and participation has broad benefits for the brain, and specific benefits for DHH children.

Session 2 (2 parts) Genetic testing for hearing loss - clinical utility and latest developments

Presented by: Mona Saleh and Radhika Rajkumar

Did you know that 50% of hearing loss has a genetic basis1? Genetic causes include over 100 genes associated with non-syndromic hearing loss and over 400 syndromic conditions that can include hearing loss as well as other malformations and medical problems. Syndromic and non-syndromic deafness are genetically heterogeneous disorders characterized by mild to profound deafness in early adulthood, childhood, or infancy. The genetic heterogeneity associated with these conditions can make it difficult to use phenotype as the sole criterion to select a definitive cause.

Understanding the cause of hearing loss can be empowering and beneficial to both a child and their family by confirming a diagnosis, helping guide treatment and management decisions and enabling early interventions to maximise speech and learning potential. Identification of a disease-causing variant can also inform recurrence-risk assessment and genetic counselling.

With technical advances and incorporation of genomics into routine healthcare gaining momentum, Invitae is endeavouring to provide high quality genetic testing that is affordable and accessible to all patients and their families. In addition, our commitment to professional development aims to ensure that health professionals are aware of and empowered by this opportunity to integrate genetic testing into their practice.

Invitae’s team will provide a tailored educational session, to update researchers and clinicians on the genetics of hearing loss and the utility of genetic testing. Topics will include the impact of genetics on hearing loss, why and when to test a patient, benefits and limitations of next generation sequencing, clinical utility, costs and accessibility. We will also cover the latest genetic developments and industry partnerships that allow clinicians to use genetics to better diagnose, manage and treat their patients.

In part 1 participants will get an overview of genetics and how it impacts on all stages of life including reproduction, birth, growth and development. An introduction to the utility and process of taking a family health history will also be covered. The inheritance patterns for the main causes of genetic hearing loss will be discussed as well as some case studies to illustrate the way in which genetics can impact on families with an inherited form of hearing loss.

Part 2 delves deeper into the application of genetic testing for individuals and families with hearing loss. An overview of the techniques used for genetic testing with some case examples will illustrate its utility, ethical implications and how to access Invitae’s sponsored testing program.

Session 4 Structural Abnormalities of the cochlea and auditory nerve: considerations in paediatric cochlear implantation

Presented by: Dr Kirsty Gardner-Berry

Structural abnormalities of the cochlea and auditory nerve hold a number of implications that need to be taken into consideration when counselling families about expected outcomes with cochlear implantation, and for surgical planning. This presentation reports on the 20% of children identified with structural abnormalities within a population of 346 pediatric cochlear implant recipients at NextSense. Topics will include key time points during embryological development that can impact on the severity of the anatomical abnormality, implications for choice of cochlear implant array, surgical considerations, and the potential impact on signal transmission.

Session 5: Single Sided Deafness

Presented by: Dr Dayse Tavora

Single sided deafness (SSD) is defined as a severe to profound hearing loss (>70dB HL) in one ear and hearing thresholds within normal limits in the contralateral ear (<30dB HL). People with SSD are deprived of binaural cues – squelch and summation – and have difficult hearing sound that is projected directly at their non-hearing ear because of the head shadow effect. Furthermore, SSD reduces social and psychological QoL and imposes a remarkable level of handicap as per general and specific self-assessments tool.

For the last decade, several research groups have demonstrated that CI provides a significant improvement in function including speech understanding in noise and localisation ability, as well as improving QoL and reducing tinnitus significantly in both the early and long-term.

Session 6: Cochlear Technology in the Classroom

Presented by: Dr Vidya Raghavan

It is well accepted that for all children with hearing loss, it is vital to provide a favourable signal-to-noise ratio in the challenging environment of the classroom. This is where remote microphone technology can really help.

This webinar will provide professionals with the resources and knowledge required to confidently support students with Cochlear devices in the classroom.

You will gain an understanding of current Cochlear Baha and Nucleus processors, the main players in remote microphone technology, and how to use these in the classroom with your students with implantable devices.

The session will finish with an troubleshooting quiz to help prepare you for those common classroom scenarios.


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