As mobile phones become more mini-computers, inventors and entrepreneurs are creating unique applications for medicine, including hearing apps. The most recent one is EarTrumpet, a hearing application suite for the iPhone for $1.99.

According to the product’s Web site, “the hearing test component analyzes your hearing" and the hearing enhancer component "amplifies and adjusts sound to discretely improve hearing via the earphones.”

EarTrumpet was created by Allen Foulad, a medical student "aspiring to develop a set of comprehensive hearing tools through scientific inquiry and analysis." The young inventor did not create his application in his parent’s garage, however.  In fact, the product’s literature reports that Foulad collaborated with the Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery Department at the University of California, Irvine to develop the app.

According to EarTrumpet, preliminary studies have demonstrated high accuracy of the included hearing test and the benefit of the hearing enhancement component, but notes that “features will continue to be further refined through clinical studies, leading to increased optimization of the sound processing and hearing testing technology.”

The app description also notes that the device is not a substitute for professional medical care. So far, there have been very few reviews for EarTrumpet on the Itunes store. However, the few unverified reviews left on the app’s page have stated that the app has been useful for buyers or their family members.

EarTrumpet’s Web site states that it plans to develop even more hearing features in the future. If successful, and peer reviewed testing validates the app, this handheld device may one day be an inexpensive method for consumer self-screening for hearing loss, or for the diagnosis and treatment of various ear conditions, such as tinnitus.

Below is a video tutorial of the device.

SOURCE: Praxis Biosciences