Hadassah On Call: New Frontiers in Medicine

All Ears: Hearing Loss Treatments & Trends

Dr. Michal Kaufmann, head of the Ear Surgery and Cochlear Transplantation Center at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem, talks us through the causes and treatments of hearing loss.


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IN THIS Episode

Dr. Michal Kaufmann

Area of specialty

Ear Surgery and Cochlear Transplantation.

Otology and neurotology.

Tympanoplasty and mastoidectomy

Episode Transcript

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About this episode

At the Hadassah Medical Organization, Dr. Michal Kaufmann leads the Ear Surgery and Cochlear Transplantation Center. She says the center offers a comprehensive approach to addressing hearing loss resulting from the recent conflict. For example, in addition to the standard 8,000 Hz test tone, the team employs a 16,000 Hz test tone to ensure thorough assessments and early detection of potential damage.

Hadassah doctors are part of a national association of ear, nose and throat doctors that set the protocol for managing patients with hearing loss during the war. The key, Dr. Kaufmann says, is getting the patient checked within the first 48 hours so that they do not develop any systemic damage. The primary treatment is steroids, though some patients also receive treatment in a hyperbaric pressure chamber.

Though hearing loss may seem like a minor injury for many, especially among soldiers or victims of the October 7 Hamas massacre, it can significantly impact long-term quality of life. Hadassah has dedicated a team of doctors and nurses to provide timely assistance, with a trauma nurse closely monitoring each patient's progress. The nationwide protocol ensures effective patient care and aims to contribute valuable data for future research.

We've updated this episode with a short intro from host Maayan Hoffman that includes a few stories from Hadassah's website, as our interview with Dr. Kaufmann was recorded shortly before the start of the war. Dr. Kaufmann highlights the global impact of hearing loss, affecting over 1.5 billion people in at least one ear, with around 430 million requiring rehabilitation for disabling hearing loss. She notes that approximately 13 percent of adults ages 18 and older experience difficulty hearing even when using a hearing aid.

Discussing the prevalence of difficulty hearing among adults and advancements in preventing, recognizing and treating hearing loss, Dr. Kaufmann sheds light on new treatments and identifies suitable candidates for these interventions.

Further learning:

Hadassah On Call: New Frontiers in Medicine is a production of Hadassah, The Women's Zionist Organization of America. Hadassah enhances the health of people around the world through medical education, care and research innovations at the Hadassah Medical Organization. For more information on the latest advances in medicine, please head over to hadassah.org.

Subscribe to our podcast on Apple Podcast, Google Play, or your favorite podcast app. If you haven't already, please leave us a review. It only takes a minute and when you do it helps others discover Hadassah on Call.

The show is hosted by Maayan Hoffman and produced by the team at the Hadassah offices in both New York and Israel.

This episode includes promotions for:

One Book, One Hadassah Event: February 2024
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360 Degrees of Healing, The Full Circle Campaign
360 Degrees of Healing, The Full Circle Campaign is about more than transforming a building. It's also about Delivering Hope. At the Hadassah Medical Organization, we're delivering hope to Israel's mothers and children. At our world-class facilities in Jerusalem, Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem and Hadassah Hospital Mount Scopus, we help bring thousands of healthy babies into the world each year while providing exemplary care for their moms. We also help keep Israel’s children mentally and emotionally healthy so they can thrive. Without the generous contributions of our donors, that would not be possible. Your generosity helps us deliver the many innovative services and procedures provided by a multidisciplinary team and is critical in ensuring Hadassah continues to provide world-class care to mothers and their newborns for generations to come.

For more information visit https://go.hadassah.org/ourpediatrics.

About our guest(s)

Dr. Michal Kaufmann is the head of the Ear Surgery and Cochlear Transplantation Center at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem. An ENT (head and Neck surgeon), she specializes in otology and neurotology. Her areas of expertise and treatment include the treatment of ear diseases in children and adults, tympanoplasty, and mastoidectomy.

She graduated from the Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical School and had a clinical internship at the Bikur Holim Medical Center in Jerusalem, where she completed her specialization in otorhinolaryngology and head and neck surgery.

She is a board member of the Israeli Society of Deaf Children`s Treatment and a member of several organizations, including the Israeli Association of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery, and the Israeli Association of Pediatric Otolaryngology, to name a few. In 2020, she was also included in The Best Doctors of Israel, published annually by FORBES magazine.