Rehabilitation for Single-Sided Hearing Loss

Patients with hearing loss in one ear may benefit from a hearing aid on that side. People who have complete hearing loss on one side (single-sided or unilateral deafness) will still be able to communicate in most situations. They will, however, have difficulty listening to conversation from the involved side, understanding speech in background noise, and telling where sounds are coming from.

There are a number of options for patients with this type of hearing loss. All of these options involve sending the sound to the other, good ear:

  • Baha: This option is a surgical implant that delivers the sound directly to the bone behind the involved ear. Sound delivered to bone passes across the head to the other side.
  • Phonak Spice CROS/BICROS: This option uses a set of hearing aids that are connected by a wireless link.

These options are compared in the table below. Feel free to ask your surgeon or audiologist to discuss these options with you.

Surgery (BP 100 or BP110/ Power BP3) Phonak Spice CROS/BICROS
Implant lies under the skin No Non-surgical hearing aids
Hair follicles need to be removed Yes N/A
Healing time before use ~3 months (adults); 6 months (peds) N/A
Device (BP 100 or BP110/ Power BP3) Phonak Spice CROS/BICROS
Sound processing Digital Digital
Programs (settings for different listening environments) 3 Depends on model of receiving aid on better ear
Range: (3, 4, or 5 manual programs)
Battery size and expected life BP100 – size 13
(7 to 10 days)
BP110 - 675 (7 to 10 days)
3 days to 1 week (depends on the model)
Colors Black, brown, silver, beige, charcoal, and white Black, brown, silver, gray, beige, taupe, and blue
FM compatibility
(allows user to connect to an external microphone)
Yes Yes (may need additional accessories)
Other Health Considerations (BP 100 or BP110/ Power BP3) Phonak Spice CROS/BICROS
Risk of infection Need minimal daily care around the implant N/A
Future MRIs Ok without processor N/A
Costs (BP 100 or BP110/ Power BP3) Phonak Spice CROS/BICROS
Approximate price Up to $35,000 Transmitter: $790
Receiver: Range ($1600, $2300, or $3300)
Warranty 2-year repair and 1x L&D 2-year repair and 1x L&D
Refund available? Yes, processors can be exchanged within 90 days after fit date and returned 30 days after the fit date. Registration card must be sent in at fit date. 30-day return privilege
Life of internal and external component Internal: Lifetime
External: 3 to 5 years
Life: 5 to 10 years