Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Audiometric Hearing Tests and Retests available in Gallatin and Murfreesboro offices!

Friday, March 9th, 2018

Audiometric Hearing Tests and Retests available in Gallatin and Murfreesboro offices!

Dr. Michael Tigges

Dr. Michael Tigges

Nationally Registered Certified Medical Examiner , Certified Occupational Hearing Conservationist ,

Audiometric Hearing Tests and Retests available in Gallatin and Murfreesboro offices!

KSA HEARING CONSERVATION

OSHA Compliant Audiometric Hearing Tests – Certified DOT Physicals – Drug & Alcohol Testing and more

We exceed your expectations and provide the best hearing testing and Industrial testing you have ever experienced.” – Dr. Mike KSA Hearing Conservation LLC

Certified Medical Examiner Certified Occupational Hearing Conservationist

Director Scheduler

  • Email
  • Aletha@ksahearingconservation.com
  • Phone
  • 615) 426-9556
  • Fax
  • 615-230-8211
  • Address
  • 529 Hartsville Pike Gallatin, TN 37066
  • 1850 Memorial Blvd Suite 203, Murfreesboro, TN 37129

What is a noise survey?

Friday, March 9th, 2018

What is a noise survey?

A noise survey involves taking noise measurements throughout an entire plant or a particular section to identify noisy areas. A survey is used to establish whether employees are being exposed to noise levels exceeding the exposure limits set by the OSHA Regulations or even the limits set by the company.

If you are not sure about the Law or noise limits that apply to your industry, please refer to https://www.osha.gov/dts/osta/otm/new_noise/. It is worth noting that the USA is not alone in this and that numerous countries have developed workplace standards to ensure that the average level to which an employee is exposed during an 8 hour day does not exceed 85dB(A).

So, why carry out a noise survey?

Noise surveys provide useful information which enables a safety professional to identify:

·        Areas where employees are likely to be exposed to harmful levels of noise

·        Machines and equipment which generate harmful levels of noise

·        Operatives who might be exposed to unacceptable noise levels

·        Corrective actions which may include noise control options to reduce noise exposure

A noise survey is conducted in an environment where noise is likely to be harmful such as, for example, an assembly line or workshop. In most instances, a noise survey will involve measuring noise levels with a sound level meter. Noise level readings are taken at a suitable number of positions around the noisy area. A noise map can be produced by drawing lines on a sketch between points of equal sound level. Noise survey maps provide very useful data by clearly identifying zones where there are noise hazards.

What’s involved in a noise survey?

Noise can be measured using a sound level meter which reads Sound Pressure Levels (SPLs) in dB(A) and the highest noise level reached, the peak sound pressure in Pascal (Pa).

There are two basic types of sound meter – integrated and direct reading meters. Meters which integrate the reading provide an average over a particular period of time, which is an essential technique where there are large variations in sound levels. This value is known as the continuous equivalent noise level or Leq which is normally measured or normalised over an 8 hour period.

The sound level meter, or indeed any noise measurement device, must be calibrated before and after each measurement session. To take measurements, the sound level meter is held at arm’s length at the ear height for those exposed to the noise. Remember to make a measurement at each ear!

When assessing the risk of loss of hearing, the microphone position should be as close as possible to the ear of the operative for whose benefit the noise exposure data is being taken. For a stationary worker, the microphone should be positioned above the shoulder or as near as possible. If the employee works in a standing position, the microphone should be positioned preferably 1.5 metres above the floor. Finally, if the employee works in a sitting position, the microphone should be positioned at 1 metre above the floor.

In working environments with impulse, intermittent or variable noise levels, (but also in cases where a worker’s movements cannot be followed or accompanied), the sound level meter is not designed to determine a person’s average exposure to noise over the entire or part of the shift. One solution is to use a Personal Sound Exposure Meter (PSEM) which sits on the shoulder of the selected operator and records the noise exposure, then statistically determines noise over similar exposure groups. Personal noise dosimeters can be worn for a single day or over a few working days depending on the consistency of the tasks performed each day. In this case, there is no need for the person responsible for taking the noise measurements to be in attendance. The noise data will be collected and downloaded for analysis at the end of the measurement period.

Next steps

If you already have your own noise measurement equipment, you will be familiar with the process. If you are in the early stages of implementation, you may want to research this further and attend a short course to refresh your knowledge or learn about the technique further. Have questions about the basics of a noise survey ?

Can’t wait? Need Help? Need a Noise Survey done?

Call KSA HEARING CONSERVATION LLC now at 615-426-9556 and we will be happy to answer your questions.

I need an Noise Dosimetry Survey. What Do I Do?

Friday, March 9th, 2018

If you need noise survey assistance as discussed in this article call us at 615-406-0497 or email us at DrMike@KSAHEARINGCONSERVATION.COM for details and a free estimate or go to our website at KSA HEARING CONSERVATION LLC

Noise Dosimetry Surveys

Whether they are subjected to a constant sound or high intensity bursts of loud sounds throughout the day, employees in noisy workplaces are at risk of permanent damage to their hearing. For a noisy workplace, having a Hearing Conservation Program is imperative to protecting both employee health and employer liability.

How to start? Determining the appropriate type of protection for each employee and area can be daunting, because individual employees may have varying levels of exposure to different sounds throughout the day and exposed in different areas over a typical 8 hour workday.

 The best way to determine the volume, frequency and length of noise exposure to each employee—or employee function—is through a noise dosimetry survey or noise dosimetry testing/sampling.

A noise dosimeter is a small, shoulder-mounted unit that is amazingly compact and lightweight; these breakthrough safety tools are designed to measure the noise an employee is exposed to over the working day to uncover dangerous areas, as well as to assure compliance with strict national and international regulatory compliance protocols. The device is worn throughout an entire 8-hour shift, measuring sound at ear level, and determining the average exposure level per shift for that individual.

Note that a noise dosimeter is not a recorder but only a sound level meter that takes a reading at ½ to 1 second intervals and accumulates the measurements over the time worn by the worker.

Each factory and company has unique characteristics, employees and processes. Each factory also has federal, state and local regulations to consider. An experienced tester is able to choose the appropriate noise dosimeter to be used, calibrate it before and after use, and provide results in a clearly written and comprehensive report.

Based on the results, a Hearing Conservation Program can be developed or modified. Noise dosimetry surveys provide employers with the information needed in order to require workers to wear the most effective and least disruptive personal protective equipment designed for each specific function.

An important compliment to noise dosimetry is to develop a noise map of the work area. This will identify noisy areas that can be the target of noise reduction efforts should OSHA compliance be an issue.

Written by Dr. Michael Tigges

Dr. Michael Tigges is a Certified Occupational Hearing Conservationist and Certified in Noise Measurement including designing and conducting noise dosimetry surveys or noise dosimetry testing in a wide variety of industrial settings. Dr. Tigges also provides occupational safety services to include OSHA Compliant Annual Hearing testing, Certified Drug & Alcohol Testing and Federally Certified DOT Physicals both on-site and in his offices located in Gallatin and Murfreesboro, TN.

 To discuss your particular needs and obtain a complimentary proposal, contact him at 615-406-0497 or email him at DrMike@ksahearingconservation

  • Our primary service areas for OSHA Compliant Hearing Testing, Noise Dosimetry and Noise Surveys are: Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Virginia, Indiana, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.  We can service most other areas of the U.S. but with some added travel charges.
  • https://ksahearingconservation.com/contact

I need an Noise Dosimetry Survey. What Do I Do?

Thursday, February 8th, 2018

If you need noise survey assistance as discussed in this article call us at 615-406-0497 or email us at DrMike@KSAHEARINGCONSERVATION.COM for details and a free estimate or go to our website at KSA HEARING CONSERVATION LLC

Noise Dosimetry Surveys

February 5th, 2018

Whether they are subjected to a constant sound or high intensity bursts of loud sounds throughout the day, employees in noisy workplaces are at risk of permanent damage to their hearing. For a noisy workplace, having a Hearing Conservation Program is imperative to protecting both employee health and employer liability.

How to start? Determining the appropriate type of protection for each employee and area can be daunting, because individual employees may have varying levels of exposure to different sounds throughout the day and exposed in different areas over a typical 8 hour workday.

 The best way to determine the volume, frequency and length of noise exposure to each employee—or employee function—is through a noise dosimetry survey or noise dosimetry testing/sampling.

A noise dosimeter is a small, shoulder-mounted unit that is amazingly compact and lightweight; these breakthrough safety tools are designed to measure the noise an employee is exposed to over the working day to uncover dangerous areas, as well as to assure compliance with strict national and international regulatory compliance protocols. The device is worn throughout an entire 8-hour shift, measuring sound at ear level, and determining the average exposure level per shift for that individual.

Note that a noise dosimeter is not a recorder but only a sound level meter that takes a reading at ½ to 1 second intervals and accumulates the measurements over the time worn by the worker.

Each factory and company has unique characteristics, employees and processes. Each factory also has federal, state and local regulations to consider. An experienced tester is able to choose the appropriate noise dosimeter to be used, calibrate it before and after use, and provide results in a clearly written and comprehensive report.

Based on the results, a Hearing Conservation Program can be developed or modified. Noise dosimetry surveys provide employers with the information needed in order to require workers to wear the most effective and least disruptive personal protective equipment designed for each specific function.

An important compliment to noise dosimetry is to develop a noise map of the work area. This will identify noisy areas that can be the target of noise reduction efforts should OSHA compliance be an issue.

Written by Dr. Michael Tigges

Dr. Michael Tigges is a Certified Occupational Hearing Conservationist and Certified in Noise Measurement including designing and conducting noise dosimetry surveys or noise dosimetry testing in a wide variety of industrial settings. Dr. Tigges also provides occupational safety services to include OSHA Compliant Annual Hearing testing, Certified Drug & Alcohol Testing and Federally Certified DOT Physicals both on-site and in his offices located in Gallatin and Murfreesboro, TN.

 To discuss your particular needs and obtain a complimentary proposal, contact him at 615-406-0497 or email him at DrMike@ksahearingconservation

What is a noise survey?

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017

WHAT IS A NOISE SURVEY

A noise survey involves taking noise measurements throughout an entire plant or a particular section to identify noisy areas. A survey is used to establish whether employees are being exposed to noise levels exceeding the exposure limits set by the OSHA Regulations or even the limits set by the company.

If you are not sure about the Law or noise limits that apply to your industry, please refer to https://www.osha.gov/dts/osta/otm/new_noise/. It is worth noting that the USA is not alone in this and that numerous countries have developed workplace standards to ensure that the average level to which an employee is exposed during an 8 hour day does not exceed 85dB(A).

So, why carry out a noise survey?     

Noise surveys provide useful information which enables a safety professional to identify:

  • Areas where employees are likely to be exposed to harmful levels of noise
  • Machines and equipment which generate harmful levels of noise
  • Operatives who might be exposed to unacceptable noise levels
  • Corrective actions which may include noise control options to reduce noise exposure

A noise survey is conducted in an environment where noise is likely to be harmful such as, for example, an assembly line or workshop.  In most instances, a noise survey will involve measuring noise levels with a sound level meter. Noise level readings are taken at a suitable number of positions around the noisy area. A noise map can be produced by drawing lines on a sketch between points of equal sound level. Noise survey maps provide very useful data by clearly identifying zones where there are noise hazards.

What’s involved in a noise survey?

Noise can be measured using a sound level meter which reads Sound Pressure Levels (SPLs) in dB(A) and the highest noise level reached, the peak sound pressure in Pascal (Pa).

There are two basic types of sound meter – integrated and direct reading meters. Meters which integrate the reading provide an average over a particular period of time, which is an essential technique where there are large variations in sound levels. This value is known as the continuous equivalent noise level or Leq which is normally measured or normalised over an 8 hour period.

The sound level meter, or indeed any noise measurement device, must be calibrated before and after each measurement session. To take measurements, the sound level meter is held at arm’s length at the ear height for those exposed to the noise. Remember to make a measurement at each ear!

When assessing the risk of loss of hearing, the microphone position should be as close as possible to the ear of the operative for whose benefit the noise exposure data is being taken. For a stationary worker, the microphone should be positioned above the shoulder or as near as possible. If the employee works in a standing position, the microphone should be positioned preferably 1.5 metres above the floor. Finally, if the employee works in a sitting position, the microphone should be positioned at 1 metre above the floor.

In working environments with impulse, intermittent or variable noise levels, (but also in cases where a worker’s movements cannot be followed or accompanied), the sound level meter is not designed to determine a person’s average exposure to noise over the entire or part of the shift. One solution is to use a Personal Sound Exposure Meter (PSEM) which sits on the shoulder of the selected operator and records the noise exposure, then statistically determines noise over similar exposure groups. Personal noise dosimeters can be worn for a single day or over a few working days depending on the consistency of the tasks performed each day. In this case, there is no need for the person responsible for taking the noise measurements to be in attendance. The noise data will be collected and downloaded for analysis at the end of the measurement period.

Next steps

If you already have your own noise measurement equipment, you will be familiar with the process. If you are in the early stages of implementation, you may want to research this further and attend a short course to refresh your knowledge or learn about the technique further. Have questions about the basics of a noise survey ?

Can’t wait? Call KSA HEARING CONSERVATION LLC now at 615-426-9556 and we will be happy to answer your questions.

Hearing Tests and Retests available in Gallatin and Murfreesboro offices!

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017
Hearing Test and Retest now in Gallatin and Murfreesboro offices.

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On-Site Audiometric Testing

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

On-Site Audiometric Testing

Hearing Safety Audiometric Testing
OSHA Compliant

Audiometric Testing is required by OSHA & MSHA annually to all employees who are exposed to noise levels equal or greater than 85dBA

Workers in the oil, gas, mining, construction and many other fields can be exposed to harmful noise levels during equipment operation. If you’re an employer who’s industry exposes your employees to occupational noise levels higher than OSHA or MSHA mandates you’ll need to offer Audiometric testing. This process will start by determining the noise exposure level within the workplace environment. Areas where occupational noise level testing exceeds the federal maximum standards employers must offer audiometric hearing evaluations on an annual basis.

Our service areas include: Tennessee, Alabama, Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, South Carolina, & Texas. If your state is not listed please call 615-426-9556 to see if we service your area.


Let KSA Hearing Conservation bring Audiometric Testing to your location(s) according to your schedule. We offer a professionally trained staff and fully equipped units to provide all of the required audiometric testing and reporting for the following:

  • Baseline and Annual Audiometric Testing
  • Review and interpretation of each test
  • Analysis, recommendations, summary report and notification
  • Meets OSHA and MSHA regulations

All of our medical staff and health technicians are licensed or certified in their fields of expertise. Our screening services are federal standard compliant and clinically sound. Health tests are professionally reviewed by our physicians or audiologists, as applicable, giving your employees reliable recommendations. Call 615-426-9556 for more information.

By: Dr. Michael Tigges

Are My Standard Threshold Shifts (STS’s) Recordable?

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

Determining Recordability and Work Relatedness

Hearing Safety Audiometric Testing
OSHA Compliant

A STS (standard threshold shift) tells us that an employee’s hearing has worsened compared to baseline test results, but does not tell us why it has worsened. Since OSHA considers most STS’s to be work-related unless determined otherwise by an appropriate professional, you may simply record all the STS’s on the OSHA 300 Log.

 DID YOU KNOW, however, that you can have an audiologist or a physician make a determination regarding the work-relatedness of your STS’s?

You may, of course, utilize the services of local audiologists or physicians, but an excellent first choice would be the audiologist or Physician who provides professional oversight of your hearing conservation program and audiometric testing.

OSHA considers most STS’s to be work-related unless determined otherwise by an appropriate professional.

The determination process is straightforward. You will most likely be asked to submit a questionnaire indicating the employee’s 8-hour TWA (time-weighted average) noise exposure and the NRR (noise reduction rating) of his or her hearing protection. Earplug or earmuff NRR’s are determined by the manufacturer and can be found on the product packaging material. Time weighted average noise exposure is best measured by personal dosimetry, although a sound level meter can be used. If the employee works an extended shift, it will be important to provide values normalized to an 8-hour shift as OSHA requires that this information be furnished to the audiogram reviewer. You will also be asked to provide information about non-work noise exposure and any health conditions that may possibly be affecting hearing.

The reviewing professional will check to see if the hearing protection worn by the employee is adequate for the reported noise exposure. The employee’s audiometric history will also be examined in conjunction with information you have provided in the questionnaire to include medical history that may affect or cause a shift along with potential outside activities such as chainsaw use, target shooting and other activities that may have an affect on a shift and determining if it is work-related.

Certain audiometric configurations may suggest conductive hearing loss and, especially in combination with information suggesting a current cold sinus condition or a history of outer or middle ear problem, may be determined “not work-related.” Most cases, however, are not so straightforward. More often, it is the additional information provided in the questionnaire regarding health conditions or non-work noise exposure that is critical. Make sure you are provided the questionnaire and if not contact me directly for information in this regard as this is an important factor with any Potential STS that may occur during testing.

Many audiometric configurations will show high frequency hearing losses, which suggest the sensorineural losses caused by both noise and aging. Of help in distinguishing these two common causes of sensorineural loss is the employee’s pure tone threshold at 8000 Hz. OSHA does not require testing at this frequency, but it is strongly recommended that you include it in your testing program. While both noise and age result in high frequency hearing losses, the pure tone configurations typically differ in that noise induced hearing loss will often show an improvement at 8000 Hz while age-related hearing loss will not.

If the pure tone configuration suggests noise-induced hearing loss, is that loss due to workplace noise or recreational noise, a medical condition, medications, or a combination of both? What about power tools or firearm use? What about family history of hearing loss? Is there a history of diabetes? High blood pressure, medications. Without additional information, the reviewer may be unable to make a determination as to whether or not the STS is work-related.

Remember that OSHA considers most STS’s to be work-related, However, OSHA does give you the option, however, of having an audiologist or a physician review each of your STS’s for work-relatedness. Make sure your company is providing a  WORK-RELATEDNESS DETERMINATION QUESTIONNAIRE

 This questionnaire must be completed if a retest of an annual hearing test reveals a CONFIRMED OSHA STS. While such review does not guarantee that a given STS will be determined “not work-related,” it will almost certainly reduce the overall number of cases you need to record on the OSHA 300 Log.

Questions, call us today at KSA Hearing Conservation.

Michael Tigges DC, CME, COHC

Nationally Registered Certified Medical Examiner

Certified Occupational Hearing Conservationist

Director Scheduler

Hearing Testing and Evaluations

Monday, August 14th, 2017

Hearing Testing and Evaluations   

At the start of the hearing tests & evaluation process, the patient’s medical history is reviewed with questions regarding general health and gathering specific information regarding the patient’s hearing history.The patient will also be asked to describe any concerns they may have about their hearing.

Following the case history, an ear exam called an Otoscopy will be performed. We will look into your ears using an otoscope. This will check for anything in the ear canal that might affect the hearing test results such as ear wax in the ears or any anatomical problems like a hole in the eardrum. Finally, the audiologist will conduct a series of hearing tests to assess whether hearing loss is present and what type of hearing loss it is.

The various hearing tests that may be performed to identify and diagnose a hearing loss include: Pure Tone Air testing and speech testing.

During pure tone testing, the patient will be asked to press a button when they hear a beep. The test is looking for the softest level the patient is able to hear the beeps at different frequencies or pitches. During speech testing the patient will be asked to repeat words. The test will search for the softest level the patient is able to accurately repeat words as well as determine speech understanding ability at a comfortable volume. All of your results will be recorded in an audiogram. This will help the determine the degree and type of hearing loss.

Once the hearing testing is completed, we will determine whether a hearing loss exists, what type and degree of hearing loss is present, and make recommendations regarding the patient’s treatment options. Recommendations may include medical evaluation referral and treatment for hearing loss.

If you think you may have hearing loss problems, get your hearing tested today at KSA HEARING CONSERVATION LLC. Contact Us and make an appointment at one of our two convenient locations in Gallatin and Murfressboro, Tennessee.

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