"Jeff Grama is by far the best audiologist I’ve ever been to in all my years of getting hearing aids. He is without a doubt the most skilled, not only because of his expertise with selection of the device, but also because he is a specialist at repairing it..."

Why Choose an Audiologist

Audiologists hold advanced degrees from accredited universities with special training in the assessment, identification, prevention and non-medical treatment of hearing disorders. Audiologists are required to complete a full-time internship, pass a demanding national competency examination and be licensed by the state. By virtue of their graduate education, professional certification and licensure, audiologists are the most qualified professionals to perform hearing tests, refer patients for medical treatment, fit hearing instruments and provide hearing rehabilitation services.

The value of experience

The audiologist who has helped thousands of patients is more likely to recognize and solve hearing aid problems. His experience ensures you will be properly fitted and receive the full benefit from your hearing instruments. When the devices are correctly programmed, you will understand speech in noisy environments, as well as in quiet. In many cases, less experienced hearing professionals fail to utilize up to 80 percent of the hearing aid’s capabilities. This results in unnecessary frustration and limited speech comprehension in the presence of background noise.

Meet Jeff Grama

Jeff Grama, M.A., completed his undergraduate training at UCLA in 1972 and received his Master of Arts degree in Audiology from San Diego State University in 1975. He previously worked for a world-renowned speech and hearing center and a major hearing aid manufacturer. In 1983, Mr. Grama purchased Hearing Aid Services of Hollywood. He has over 35 years of experience in the fields of audiology and hearing aid dispensing.

Mr. Grama's professional affiliations include membership in the American Academy of Audiology, Hearing HealthCare Providers of California, the International Hearing Society and the American Auditory Society.

Jeff Grama Receives Hearing Professional of the Year Award

February 11, 2011 began with a real surprise. I received a phone call at 9 AM informing me that I had been selected as the Western Region Hearing Care Professional of the Year. Let me give you a little background about what transpired.

Early in September 2010, a packet was sent to my office by Spectrum Brands (Rayovac) with some forms and a small display. The cover letter said to put the forms in my waiting room in a conspicuous spot so my patients could have easy access to it. Each patient who chose to complete the information was asked to provide a narrative about why I should be considered for the award. All submissions would be read and evaluated by a professional panel.

So, I put up the display and, frankly, forgot about the contest. I did notice that only a few of the fifty forms remained at the end of January, but did not recall ever seeing anybody working on them.

The contest spokesperson told me that dozens of my patients had mailed the forms and that they had incredible things to report about their experiences in my office. Since her call, I have been interviewed for some national audiology publications and received a plaque, which I am proudly displaying in my office. Additionally, a $500 donation was made in my name to the Hearing Loss Association of Los Angeles.

I cannot thank you enough for all of the kind things you wrote about me. This is something I shall cherish forever.

Why I Enjoy Coming To Work

When I was young, my father told me to pursue my dreams. He said, “Do a job you enjoy and you will never work a day in your life.”

This advice rings true for me as an audiologist, even though the business world can, at times, be difficult.

Once I became an audiologist, there were several avenues I could have pursued. Among these were providing clinical diagnostics, doing auditory research and rehabilitating hearing loss. I chose to focus on rehabilitation, helping those with hearing loss function better in their everyday lives by providing them with hearing aids.

As I look back, it is amazing how technology has evolved. Originally, we had three types of hearing aids: body worn, over the ear and bone-anchored aids. The body worn and over the ear styles were very large, while the bone-anchored aids were built into “Clark Kent” super-thick plastic eyeglass temples. All had only a volume control to adjust loudness, and fidelity was equivalent to a cheap transistor radio. The primitive nature of these products made them all but unusable in noisy environments.

In the late 1970s, custom in-the-ear aids were added to the mix. These filled the entire ear, appearing as large wads of bubble gum stuffed into the ears. However, there were some innovations in all of the products that added functionality. Telephone coils allowed better hearing on the phone. Small potentiometers (screw controls) gave us limited ability to make adjustments to the instruments. By 1980, eyeglass bone conduction aids were discontinued. Hearing in background noise was still almost impossible with products manufactured in the 1970s.

The decade of the 1980s introduced solid-state circuitry. This innovation made the units more reliable and moisture resistant while increasing fidelity. It also allowed for more and better fine tuning. Unfortunately, no improvements in speech understanding were realized with this technology.

The next advancement— digitally adjustable analog hearing aids— occured in early 1990. Improvements in microphone technology helped speech understanding in noise, but the analog nature of the circuits still limited performance because all sounds were amplified equally. Completely-in-the-canal aids were introduced in 1993. They were small and virtually invisible, but were appropriate for only mild hearing losses.

The mid-1990s brought in the first all-digital hearing devices. Now that the hearing aids had “brains” that could differentiate between speech and environmental sounds, the race for performance improvement was in high gear. Significant increases in speech understanding were evident from the start. Patients reported they could actually follow conversations in noise for the first time.

When the first generation of digital aids was introduced, I had to rethink how I approached hearing correction. There were so many options available that more time was needed to access everything the products had to offer. Since each manufacturer has its own software and theory of hearing correction, I had a lot to learn.

Nowadays, with the advent of the 7th generation of digital instruments, programming software is updated several times a year. Completely new products are introduced every 20 to 24 months in conjunction with computer chip development. The software that was once a challenge is now second nature to me.

Each ensuing generation of technology has allowed me to more effectively meet the hearing challenges of those I serve. It is the promise of improving the quality of your lives by maximizing the potential of each advancement that keeps me eager to get to work every day.