It is quite a common thing that musicians and artists that are exposed to loud noise, will eventually suffer from hearing damage. We have seen many artists suffer from this career threatening damage, the likes of Phil Collins, Eric Clapton and Ozzy Osbourne and the tinnitus that is effecting Chris Martin from Coldplay, this is a problem that many more will be affected by. This article from the BBC talks about Chris Goldscheider and his pursuit of damages over his hearing damage. Rightly or wrongly itâs an interesting tale.
A renowned viola player is suing the Royal Opera House for ruining his hearing and his career during rehearsals of Wagnerâs Die Walkure.
Chris Goldscheider claims his hearing was irreversibly damaged by brass instruments put immediately behind him.
The Musiciansâ Union says hearing damage is a major problem for musicians playing in orchestras.
The Royal Opera House denies it is responsible, but around a quarter of its players suffer hearing illnesses.
In court documents seen by the BBC, Goldscheider claims that in 2012 his hearing was “irreversibly damaged” during rehearsals of Richard Wagnerâs thunderous Die Walkure “from brass instruments placed immediately behind him” in the famous “pit” at the Royal Opera House.
The sound peaked at around 137 decibels, which is roughly the sound of a jet engine. The court documents say the noise “created an immediate and permanent traumatic threshold shift”.
Image captionChris Goldscheider played the viola with some of the worldâs greatest orchestras
Goldscheider says this amounts to “acoustic shock”, one effect of which is that the brain hugely amplifies ordinary sounds.
Music has been in most of Goldscheiderâs life: “For the last quarter of a century Iâve been a professional musician. Music was my income. It was my everything,” he says.
The son of a composer, from the age of 10 he spent in excess of six hours a day practising and rehearsing. He played the viola with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and BBC Symphony orchestras, before joining the prestigious Royal Opera House orchestra in 2002.
Career highlights have included performing live with the famous Three Tenors to 100,000 people at the Barcelona Camp Nou football stadium, and with Kylie Minogue on MTV. He has also recorded with artists including the band 10cc.
Goldscheider says the effects of the hearing damage have been devastating.
“Ordinary sounds like banging cups and glasses together is a very painful noise,” he says.
“My newborn daughter last year was crying so much I actually got noise-induced vertigo because of my injury and I ended up in bed for three weeks.”
The musician says he has lost the career he loved and his mental health has deteriorated as he struggles to cope with the impact and effects of his hearing problems.
Life has changed dramatically. To carry out ordinary every day tasks such as preparing food, Chris has to wear ear protectors. Especially upsetting is that he had been unable to listen to his 18-year-old son Ben – one of the countryâs outstanding young French horn players.
“Ben is a fantastic musician. I havenât been able to listen to him play or practice since my injury. Iâve missed him playing concerts and winning competitions. I canât even bear him practising in an upstairs room when I am downstairs in the house,” he says.
musician has to wear ear protectors to carry out every day tasks
At the time of his injury, Goldscheider was provided with hearing protection capable of reducing the noise by up to 28 decibels, but his lawyers claim this was insufficient. They say he was not given enough training in how to use it and protect himself, and that the noise levels should not have been so dangerously high.
The Royal Opera House does not accept the rehearsal noise caused Goldscheiderâs injury, and denies that is responsible.
In a statement it told the BBC: “Mr Goldscheiderâs compensation claim against the Royal Opera House is a complex medico-legal issue, which has been going on for some time and is still under investigation.
“All sides are keen to reach a resolution. The matter is now the subject of legal proceedings, and in the circumstances it wouldnât be appropriate to comment any further at this stage.”
And according to Goldscheiderâs solicitor Chris Fry, part of the Royal Opera Houseâs defence breaks new legal ground.
“Essentially what is being said is that the beautiful artistic output justifies damaging the hearing of the musicians performing it,” he says.
“Thatâs never been tested by the courts. We donât think the court is likely to uphold that, in particular where itâs clear steps could be taken to maintain the beautiful sound and protect hearing at the same time.”
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A unique species of early cretaceous snake â unique in that it apparently had four functioning limbs â has been discovered in the BÃ¼rgermeister MÃ¼ller Museum in Solnhofen, Germany this month.
The discovery was made by Dr. David Martill of the University of Portsmouth, who was showing a group of students through the museumâs collection when he noticed the specimenâs remarkable attributes.
The snake, which measured about 15 centimetres from nose to tail, is thought to have been a carnivore (a fact borne out by the bones of smaller animals preserved in its stomach) and probably hunted via constriction, like many of todayâs snakes. Experts believe that it may even have used its limbs to aid in the process.
Built for burrowing (an activity which likely would not have included its limbs in any significant way), this new discovery lends credence to the scientists who argue for snake evolution occurring on land, as opposed to in the sea.
Fossil snakes with stunted hind limbs are known to palaeontologists â and even todayâs boas and pythons have a small pair of spurs where their hind limbs are thought to have once been. However, no snake, extinct or extant, has ever been discovered with four limbs.
Appropriately enough, Dr. Martill named the creature Tetrapodophis, meaning âfour-legged snakeâ.
However, some experts are not convinced. In our vibrant, ecologically diverse world, there are a great many species of legless lizards that are not true snakes. European slow worms, for example, are snake-like in aspect, but they are lizards, not snakes. Another example would be the Mexican Bipedidae family, which are serpentine in appearance, but which retain a pair of fully functioning forelimbs.
âIs it even a snake? I honestly donât think so,â said the University of Albertaâs Dr. Michael Caldwell, an expert in snake evolution, to National Geographic.comâs Ed Yong. According to Caldwell and a growing number of other critics, Tetrapodophis lacks certain distinctive features in the spine and the skull that would label it a snake. The fact that this is the only known specimen in the world and that the skull is only partially preserved will probably see the debate continue until such time as a complete specimen is unearthed.
But Dr. Martill is insistent that his discovery is a snake. Speaking to National Geographic, he pointed out the specimenâs backwards-pointing teeth, single row of belly scales, the connections between the vertebrae and the shortness of the animalâs tail after the hip â all of which suggest snake to the educated observer. Of course, many legless lizards also feature these traits, but none has all of them. This means that even if the animal has been mis-identified, it is still totally unique to science.
Even more mysterious are the origins of the fossil itself, which contains the rather distinctive characteristics indicative of the Crato formation in Brazil. Discounting for a second that this is quite possibly the earliest fossil snake known to have emerged from South America, question marks have been raised regarding how the specimen could have made it to Germany when the trade of such artefacts is illegal under Brazilian law.
Since 1942, it has been illegal for any unlicensed person to dig for fossils in Brazil without first gaining permission from the Brazilian National Department of Mineral Production (DNPM). Last year, a number of people were prosecuted (where they faced a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison) for the illegal export of Brazilian fossils to museums in Germany and Great Britain. Odds are that Brazilian authorities, as well as the scientific community in general, will be looking into the origins of such an important find with great interest.
This is an interesting review of a study of how effective ear plugs are in the workplace. We take for granted that people working in loud factories wear protective hearing, but many of the clubs, pubs, concerts and festivals that have as equal levels of sound. As they say below, it isnât mandatory to wear ear plugs in such environments, which defies common sense and possibly causes more damage than we understand. Here you can find the original source of the review.
A review of the literature turned up only two high quality studies that looked at whether wearing earplugs to music venues will prevent hearing loss and tinnitus directly afterward.
Dr. Wilko Grolman and colleagues at University Medical Center Utrecht in The Netherlands searched for published studies containing the keywords âmusicâ and âearplugsâ and screened 228 resulting papers. All but four were not eligible for inclusion in the review and only two were highly relevant and did not have a highÂ riskÂ of bias, in the reviewersâ estimation.
Two studies simply examined people who chose on their own to wear or not wear earplugs, while two randomized controlled trials tested what happened when participants were assigned to wear earplugs or not.
Two studies reported on hearing loss and tinnitus while one only reported hearing loss.
The two best studies were different enough that the researchers couldnât combine their dataÂ and analyze the results, the reviewers wrote. Both included 29 concert attendees and performed audiometry before and after the concerts. In one study, participants were allowed to choose whether or not they wore earplugs, and only three chose to wear them.
âFrankly, with such a small comparator group between three subjects and the others, it would be hard to assess validity of plugs or not,â said Dr. Jennifer Derebery, president of the Los Angeles Society of Otolaryngology and lead author of the first study.
âWe had trained them all in proper insertion, and encouraged but not required wearing them,â Derebery told Reuters Health by email.
In the other study, 15 participants were assigned to the earplug group.
In general, wearing earplugs did reduce hearing loss directly after the concerts, but did not eliminate it completely, as reported online March 3 in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.
âEar plugs are effective in preventing hearing loss when they are used both correctly and consistently,â said Colleen G. Le Prell, the Emilie and Phil Schepps Professor of Hearing Science at the University of Texas at Dallas, who was not involved in the review.
âThis systematic review highlights the very limited data on prevention of recreational music-induced hearing loss using earplugs,â Le Prell told Reuters Health by email.
âAt younger ages, loud toys, firecrackers, loud video games, personal stereos or personal music players, lawnmowers or leaf blowers, sporting events or air shows, or other non-music events might be more likely noisy activities than music venue attendance,â Le Prell said. âA significant number of youth are also involved in target shooting activities, which children can get involved with through Boy Scouts or other organizations.â
For teens and young adults, repeat exposures to amplified music at clubs, concerts, festivals, or other related events may damage the inner ear and result in hearing loss, she said.
âMost concerts are both loud enough, and long enough, that they are likely to exceed the total daily exposure allowed by workplace safety regulations,â she said. âSound exposure also commonly occurs via loud music delivered via personal listening devices, at sporting or other recreational events, and at jobs that involve lawn-mowing, use of power tools, or construction services.â
For workplace noise exposure, âwe are not doing a very good job achieving correct and consistent use of hearing protection devices (HPD), including both ear plugs and ear muffs,â she said.
âIn the United States, it is relatively uncommon for music venues to provide ear plugs at no charge,â Le Prell said. Even if they were provided, people may need to be educated in why using them is important and in how to use them correctly, she said.
âAs a neurotologist, it really is upsetting to see these kids coming in younger and younger with a completely preventable hearing loss,â Derebery said.
Split by a middle screw, the Hytera PD700 series is capable of connecting all Hytera radios from the same series. This includes the PD715, the PD755, the PD705, the PD785 and the PD795 radios. All of these radios bring something different to the table, in addition to Hyteras trademark solutions. These include an ergonomic design and generally good battery life. The PD715 is probably the most reliable of the bunch. It works really well even in a hazardous environment. It also meets all the ATEX and IEC standards.
The PD755 comes with an increased battery life and a partial keypad, as well as voice call capabilities. Compared to the PD755, the PD705 is a slightly less sophisticated design but it comes with a GPS and supports both analog and digital radios. The PD785 meets all DMR standards and has probably the most ergonomic design out of these models. The PD795 comes with all ETSI and DMR standards.
The Hytera PD500 series connects its radios with a 2 pin connector. The dimensions of the two pins are 3.5mm and 2.5mm. There is a securing screw at the back. This connector can link any combination of the Hytera PD500 series radios together. When I say any, I mean the two radios in that series, since the PD500 series only has two designs, the PD505 and the PD565. The PD505 is very light and somewhat surprisingly, it still has excellent range. Its compact housing results in an improved sound quality. Compared to the PD505, the PD565 has more functions and supports both analogue and digital radios.
PD400 and PD600 series
PD400 and PD600 series radios are connected with a 13 pin connector (which connects to another plastic adapter). This particular connector connects to devices both from the PD400 and PD600 series. The list includes the PD605, PD665, PD685, X1P, X1E, PD405 and the PD415 radios. The PD605 comes with a lightweight design and probably one of the best radios of Hytera when it comes to the prize to value ratio. It has a compact housing and like most of the companyâs designs, supports both analogue and digital radios.
The PD665 is another high quality handheld device. It has a lightweight metal casing and a full keypad. The programmable keys and the LCD display are surely welcomed additions as well. The PD685 brings very similar traits to the table, the lightweight design and the full keypad can all be found in the PD665. The X1P is different, itâs a lot thinner and its main advantage that it will work even in very hazardous conditions.
The X1E meets all ETSI and DMR standards and probably the smallest design Hytera has. Those who want an entry level radio for a more than affordable price, will probably have to look at the PD405. This radio can go for about 16 hours in digital mode. The PD415 has an integrated RFID reader and is generally recommended for patrolling personnel. Just like the PD405, it can last up to 16 hours.