Cochlear announces the release of the Baha® SoundArc – an exciting new non-surgical bone conduction devic

September 2017

Today, Cochlear, the global leader in bone conduction hearing solutions, announced the commercial availability of the new Cochlear™ Baha® SoundArc in the UK – a stylish, comfortable and effective device that will allow people to hear like never before.

The Baha SoundArc is a new hearing solution for people who live with conductive hearing loss, mixed hearing loss or single-sided sensorineural deafness (SSD). It is a non-surgical behind-the-head band that works together with all of Cochlear’s Baha 5 sound processors.

Baha SoundArc immediately delivers the benefits of the advanced Baha 5 System – featuring the smartest and most powerful bone conduction sound processor range. Within seconds, patients can experience hearing with the world’s smallest sound processor, the Baha 5; as well as the Baha 5 Power and the Baha 5 SuperPower, designed for patients with greater degrees of hearing loss who may benefit from additional amplification. Baha 5 sound processors connect wirelessly to a range of devices and can stream sound directly from iPhone, iPad and iPod touch*.

“All previous non-surgical devices have used the head or ears to aid retention. With the Baha SoundArc we needed to find a way to deliver excellent sound quality, power performance and fit all different head shapes and sizes – without compromising on comfort. This makes the SoundArc really quite unique” relates Mats Dotevall, Director of Design & Development at Cochlear Bone Anchored Solutions AB (CBAS).

Excellent results reported from first clinical experiences

The Baha SoundArc’s user satisfaction was tested during a first experience program in a number of selected clinics in the UK from April to June 2017. The reported results were excellent, with an overall satisfaction rating of more than 85% in take home trials.

Jane Beavan, Clinical Scientist in Audiology at The Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in Cheshire, is one of the audiologists who trialled the SoundArc. She says: “The patients who have used the SoundArc so far have given us some very positive feedback. They feel it’s very comfortable, they’re very happy with the retention and cosmetically it’s allowed them to use it in lots of different situations.

I had a teenage patient who was looking at a Baha System as a potential option, but she wasn’t keen on wearing the existing demo devices in school. But when I gave her the SoundArc she was very happy to give it a go.” “The Baha SoundArc allows our patients to have a full experience of bone conduction and that will allow them to make an informed decision before proceeding to implant.”

“We are very pleased with both the patients’ and the professionals’ responses to the SoundArc,” says Stuart Thomas, General Manager, UK, Ireland and South Africa. “In the demo setting, the SoundArc scored fantastically for all the important areas that really matter to our customers: comfort, sound quality, aesthetics, retention, ease-of-use and speech understanding. Even people with more severe levels of hearing loss and SSD can benefit from the technology, not just those with pure conductive hearing loss.”

More people expected to try bone conduction hearing

As a trial device, the discreet Baha SoundArc has an opportunity to make testing bone conduction more appealing. Although conventional demo devices, such as a head band and test band, work well in a clinical setting, they are not designed for use in everyday situations.

Jane Beavan believes the SoundArc will entice more people to test bone conduction:

“The demo devices that are currently available haven’t changed much, and they do have some limitations. What impressed me about the SoundArc is its sleek, modern design and I am confident that our patients will really appreciate that.”

Giving children more options to hear

Since 2002 the Baha Softband has been an excellent, longer-term option for children who are too young or not ready for a bone conduction implant. It has provided tens of thousands of children the amplification they need to hear from an early age.

With the introduction of the Baha SoundArc, Cochlear is adding to its broad portfolio of hearing options for children. “For us it’s not about a one-size fits all approach, it’s about innovating and making sure our customers have options that fit both their lifestyle and their stage in life” continues Stuart Thomas.

About Cochlear Limited

Cochlear is the global leader in implantable hearing solutions. The company has a global workforce of 3,000 people and invests more than AU$100 million a year in research and development. Products include hearing systems for cochlear, bone conduction and acoustic implants.

Over 450,000 of all ages, across more than 100 countries, now hear because of Cochlear.

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