NEWS UPDATES:

EAR-Central: Putting Down New Roots In Northern AZ!  An Update...

In my last news update, I had temporarily suspended my practice to facilitate real estate prep for our home sale and moving.  I have officially begun practice again, now located in Dewey, AZ--part of the quad-city complex which includes Prescott, Chino Valley, Prescott Valley, and Dewey-Humboldt.  We are thrilled with our new home in Dewey, which has a separate office building just off of our back patio.  We recently remodeled it and are thrilled with the finished product!  More about that later.

Dewey is the easternmost of the quad cities, making it the most accessible to Interstate 17 via the Cordes Lakes junction (exit 262) between Phoenix and Flagstaff--about an hour and a quarter drive from each one.  Our new office is almost exactly 20 minutes from exiting I-17 onto Arizona Highway 69 towards Prescott, heading north from Phoenix, (or exit 278 to Arizona Hwy 169 for those traveling south from Flagstaff).

In addition to serving the Quad-Cities, we are very accessible from North or South for those out-of-towners who may be interested in our services.  (Out-of-state inquirers: Prescott airport (PRC) has commercial air service 20 minutes from our office via United Airlines, and, of course, Phoenix SkyHarbor (PHX) is a major U.S. air hub ninety minutes to the south.)

We began seeing patients at the end of August and I am rolling out therapy services gradually, beginning in September.  My new office has almost 200 square feet and is set up for both diagnostics and therapy with a little more "wiggle room" that I had in Sierra Vista.  CLICK HERE for a sneak peek at the new office.

I have received training in ARIA, a specialized therapy program which has proven very successful in treating binaural integration (dichotic listening) deficits which are a very common presentation in CAPD.  Most dichotic therapies have been rather tedious and protracted, so that, frequently patients (especially younger ones) are tempted to mutiny!  ARIA, developed by Dr. Deb Moncrieff (University of Memphis) is done via speaker presentation, rather than headphones, and typically only requires four 1-hour sessions to complete!  I will be introducing ARIA with my patients soon and am excited with the reports I've been hearing from other professionals.  Stay tuned!

If you need to make inquiries or schedule CAPD appointments, our toll-free phone number is 877-456-4725.  Click here for location.


Family Passages:

  • Some of you have asked about my Dad (90), who was recently moved from assisted living in Sierra Vista to a small assisted living home in Prescott ti be close to us.  The initial impact on him was not good.  Relocating someone with severe dementia can have negative consequences on their sense of well-being and stability.  We knew that was a risk, but didn't think leaving him at a facility far from us was acceptable either.  We moved him on May 23rd and he immediately had a severe emotional crisis, became hostile and hard to manage.  Eventually he was hospitatlized for tests and he was found to have a urinary tract infection (UTI) which didn't cause all of the issues, but did exacerbate them.  During his hospital stay, he was evaluated to see if he qualified for hospice services, since his health and cognition have definitely degraded.  He did qualify and is receiving wonderful support from Maggie's hospice team.  It has been a tremendous load lifter.  He is doing fairly well health-wise, and still has vestiges of his amazing sense of humor.  He finds it difficult to talk, and he's weaker and is now bed-bound.  His food has to be pureed for him.  Still and all, he recognizes us and is always happy to see us.  Those are moments to treasure!

 

  • My daughter Rebekah (36), made her big move to "Rainbow Acres"--a Christian community for adults with developmental disabilities located near Camp Verde in northern Arizona.  The big day was August 13, and she is doing very well.  We weren't sure if she would feel really homesick and insecure, but she has left the nest and "flown"!  She is enjoying classes, creative activities, outings and developing new friendships.  She has become an encourager for some of the other "ranchers" and was recently recognized for this strength at a group meeting.  We knew she would be a blessing, as well as being blessed!  Since Rainbow Acres is a private facility, some have asked us about ways they might help with some of her expenses.  Rainbow Acres is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt ministry.  They have an "Adopt-a-Rancher" support program, and are eligible for Arizona State Tuition Tax Credits if you are an Arizona resident who still itemizes tax deductions.   If you would like more information, visit their website at https://www.rainbowacres.com/.

 

Michael Webb and EAR-Central, PLLC Offer Audiologists, Related Specialists Mentoring and Training in CAPD Practice Development!

Due to a significant shortage of CAPD-qualified audiologists, and after requests from audiologists (and related specialists like SLPs) for help in this area of practice, EAR-Central, PLLC now offers various forms and levels of CAPD practice and procedures training for those wishing to expand their expertise into this promising, yet undLaptop n Notebookerserved sub-specialty.

One of Mike Webb's specialty areas is the fitting of Personal Hearing Devices (Hearing Aids) for Management of CAPD.  (More info here.) His forty-plus years of hearing aid experience (with ten-plus in fitting CAPD patients) makes him a great resource for training in this specialty field.  

Services range from email or phone consults, to online training, to on-site training.  We also offer 1-3 day training courses for groups or individuals who desire that in a particular locality.  Click here for a closer look.  We welcome any questions you may have about availability, costs, or other specifics.

In this turbulent and disruptive season of audiology practice, the return to our habilitative and diagnostic roots--separate from, but including the use amplification devices--will mark the future and expand the value of the audiological specialist who assesses and treats the WHOLE system, not just the peripheral.  And as more CAPD diagnoses impact the caseloads of related specialists, we can help de-mystify how to move forward cooperatively to help our mutual patients.  We welcome your interest and inquiries.

Email:  mowebb.earc@gmail.com.  Call:   877-456-4725 (toll-free).

We received a very kind letter of recommendation from Dr. Jack Katz!

February 7, 2016

I am pleased to recommend my friend and colleague Michael O. Webb, M.S. CCC-A and his wife Mrs. Shelley Webb in their Neuro-Audiology and Auditory Processing Services. Michael Webb has extensive background in these two areas of Audiology and Shelley Webb’s training and experience are in reading. In addition, I have worked closely with the Webbs in the effective use of my tests and therapy materials.

For me what makes the Webbs so wonderful to work with is their intelligence, integrity and concern for those with whom they work. For these reasons I recommend them to you without qualification.

Sincerely,

Jack Katz

P.S. Mr. Webb did not request this letter of recommendation. Rather I asked if he would like me to write a letter of recommendation for his website.


Book Coming in 2019!

   A Challenging and Informative Look at CAPD--Diagnosis, Treatment,    and  Why it gets Overlooked.   By our CAPD Specialist, Michael Webb!

The Elephant Between Our Ears (Some Assembly Required):

A Proactive Guide to Diagnosing and Managing Auditory Processing Disorders (APD)

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This and That…

Dear Parent...Why I'm not "Dr. Webb."   

I recently wrote a letter to the mom of one of my patients, explaining why my title is not "Dr. Webb" and why I usually tell people, "Just call me Mike."  Having different degrees within the same profession can be a little confusing.  I included it on my "Our Specialist" page (in the right-hand sidebar).  Click here to read it.


i-m-logoInteractive Metronome® (IM) has been widely used as a treatment tool among speech/language professionals and occupational and physical therapists for a number of years.  It is frequently sought out by athletes to improve certain performance skills.  Peripherally, it has been recommended in the treatment of clinical manifestations of auditory processing disorders (CAPD), but not utilized very often.

What is IM?  It is a training system which assesses and treats the neurological functions related to TIMING and RHYTHM and COORDINATION.  What does that have to do with CAPD?  Speech and language usage operates in multiple dimensions:  frequency (pitch), intensity (loudness), and TIMING (duration).  The timing aspect is called TEMPORAL PROCESSING.  Though this is grossly over-simplified, it is not overstated to say that TIMING, and it's correlate, RHYTHM are critical in our communication skills and processing speed.  There are also links to attention and self-regulation.

Recent research at Northwestern has shown that persons with deficient ability to maintain good timing/rhythm frequently have corresponding delays in speech, language, and reading abilities.  IM assesses a patient's efficiency in timing and rhythm.  Based on these baseline measurements, a treatment plan which trains these modalities is undertaken, frequently resulting in significant improvements in disorder areas affecting speech, language, motor skills, attention, self-regulation, auditory and cognitive processing.  IM is also known to be a helpful adjunct to other traditional therapies, often accelerating and improving their outcomes.  While no therapy guarantees can be made, the outcomes are typically very beneficial.

IM assessments and therapies are generally done in the clinic.  In cases where prolonged therapy plans or more severe dysfunction is present, a home version, IM-Home, is available.  IM Home permits less travel, office time, and more frequent, intensive therapy opportunities.  Frequent and intense neurological stimulation is a critical component to successful therapy outcomes via neuroplasticity--the brain's ability to "rewire" itself through targeted activities.

For more information about IM, or to schedule an assessment, please call our office at    877-456-4725 (toll-free), or email Mike Webb at mowebb.earc@gmail.com.


"It should be noted that CAPD is not technically a solitary, unified disorder, but actually represents a group of clinical entities which–individually or occuring together–create communicative difficulties for a patient.  Symptoms like poor speech-in-noise performance, temporal processing problems, “amblyaudia” (abnormal integration of the signals from the two ears in the brain), spatial processing disorder (SPD), phonemic decoding; etc., represent some of the clinical manifestations that are called CAPD.  Professional differential diagnosis by a qualified Neuro-audiological specialist is critical."

--Michael Webb