Chad Ruffin, MD

Hearing Loss

National Institute for Deafness and other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) has much information on hearing loss information and treatment. Specifically, it provides an introduction to the many types of ear disorders, how to protect your hearing, and information for parents.

Simulations of What Hearing Loss Sounds Like

  • These simulators are useful for demonstrating the loss and distortion of acoustic information. They are also useful to demonstrate the mental work required to understand speech with hearing loss. This simulation of mild and moderate hearing loss is similar to the degree of hearing loss that is associated with noise exposure and aging.

  • Cochlear implants are surgically implanted devices that bypass the damaged structures of the inner ear to create a sense of sound. This simulation and a more in-depth simulation demonstrate the poor pitch perception provided by cochlear implants. CIs provide enough information for good speech perception in quiet. However, the poor clarity makes it difficult to hear in background noise and music.

Hearing Aids:

Cochlear Implants:

Advocacy Organizations

 
 

 

Thrive with Hearing Loss.

patients cared for by physicians with similar experiences have better health outcomes.

Dr. Ruffin is an ear surgeon who is one of the first people born deaf to become a surgeon. This experiences drives his care for his patients with hearing loss.

his team does this by:

  1. providing Medical and SURGICAL ear care.

  2. educating patients how to make the most of hearing aids and hearing assistive technology.

  3. teaching patients strategies that he and other successful deaf people use to succeed with hearing loss.

  4. connecting patients to community mentors and hearing loss support groups.

 
 
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Headshot of Dr. Ruffin.

Dr. Ruffin is uniquely equipped with the skills and experience necessary to improve the lives of people with hearing loss. He aspired to become a surgeon even though universities actively discouraged d/Deaf people from pursuing medical careers. His journey as a deaf patient, surgeon, auditory neuroscientist, and hearing technology innovator has given him keen insight into the skill set necessary for individuals to succeed with hearing loss.

He received board certification after completing surgical training at Indiana University, one of the most rigorous otolaryngology residency programs. He has received research grants from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the American Academy of Otolaryngology, and the National Institutes of Health. He has published in multiple journals and his advocacy efforts were recognized by Science. As an honored attendee at the American Academy of Achievement, he shared the challenges of hearing loss with heads of state and other luminaries. He has also shared his insights at the Exponential Medicine Conference hosted by Singularity University.

 
 

 

Chad Ruffin, MD

Otology/otolaryngology

 
 
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Lightbox containing the words “Doctor” and “Scientist”
 

Innovating at each step of the hearing pathway to:

  • Create better technology to filter the noise from speech.

  • Investigate better ways of converting sound to electrical stimulation.

  • Examine how people holistically perceive speech. 

  • Promote better self-advocacy and communication skills.

Adult & Pediatric Surgical Expertise

DR. RUFFIN IS AN EAR SURGEON WHO ALSO PROVIDES ENT/OTOLARYNGOLOGY CARE

All Types & Severities of Hearing Loss

  • Hereditary and congenital hearing loss

  • Difficulty hearing in noise

  • Sudden sensorineural hearing loss

  • Otosclerosis and stapedectomy

  • Autoimmune inner ear disease

Hearing Devices

  • Hearing aids

  • Hearing assistive technology

  • Bone anchored hearing aids

  • Implantable hearing aids

  • Cochlear implants

ear surgery

  • Cochlear implants

  • Bone anchored hearing aids

  • Stapedectomy

  • Ear tubes

  • Tympanoplasty

  • Cholesteatoma

  • Tympanomastoidectomy

  • Ear tumors and cancer

Ear Infections

  • Swimmer's ear

  • Otitis externa

  • Chronic ear infections

Other ear Conditions

  • Tinnitus & hyperacusis

  • Facial nerve paralysis

  • Dizziness & vertigo

  • Inner ear migraine

Other otolaryngology/ENT conditions

  • Allergy testing and therapy

  • Nasal breathing difficulties and recurrent/chronic sinusitis

  • Hoarseness, vocal cord polyps/nodules, & voice disorders

  • Sleep apnea & snoring

  • Head and neck tumors & cancer

  • Salivary (spit producing) gland disorders

  • Thyroid & parathyroid disease

  • Facial fractures/trauma

  • Tonsillitis

Dr. Ruffin describes how his own journey with hearing loss informed his vision for better interventions for the d/Deaf and hard-of-hearing. Click for additional news, events, and resources .

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Hearing loss affects the most basic human need to connect with one another. The typical steps to improving outcomes—either aiding and restoring hearing or providing signed language—incompletely addresses skills of social cognition and self-advocacy. These skills are crucial to connecting those with hearing loss to their world.

Dr. Ruffin is committed to addressing these issues to negate the impact of hearing loss on relationships and careers. His teams innovate in three independent spaces:

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Hearing loss affects the most basic human need to connect with one another. The typical steps to improving outcomes—either aiding and restoring hearing or providing signed language—incompletely addresses skills of social cognition and self-advocacy. These skills are crucial to connecting those with hearing loss to their world.

Dr. Ruffin is committed to addressing these issues to negate the impact of hearing loss on relationships and careers. His teams innovate in three independent spaces:

Lightbox containing the words “Doctor” and “Scientist”
 

Innovating at each step of the hearing pathway to:

  • Create better technology to filter the noise from speech.

  • Investigate better ways of converting sound to electrical stimulation.

  • Examine how people holistically perceive speech. 

  • Promote better self-advocacy and communication skills.

Headshot of Dr. Ruffin.

Dr. Ruffin is uniquely equipped with the skills and experience necessary to improve the lives of people with hearing loss. He aspired to become a surgeon even though universities actively discouraged d/Deaf people from pursuing medical careers. His journey as a deaf patient, surgeon, auditory neuroscientist, and hearing technology innovator has given him keen insight into the skill set necessary for individuals to succeed with hearing loss.

He is board certified and recieved surgical training at Indiana University, one of the most rigorous otolaryngology residency programs. He has received research grants from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the American Academy of Otolaryngology, and the National Institutes of Health. He has published in multiple journals and his advocacy efforts were recognized by Science. As an honored attendee at the American Academy of Achievement, he shared the challenges of hearing loss with heads of state and other luminaries. He has also shared his insights at the Exponential Medicine Conference hosted by Singularity University.