The Hearing Center Advocates For Audiology Patient Choice

[envira-gallery id="844"] The staff at The Hearing Center has been actively advocating for the Audiology Patient Choice act on behalf of our patients. Currently there is legislation in committee in both the House of Representatives and the Senate that will increase Medicare beneficiaries access to audiologists, with what is called ‘direct access’. Those bills HR 2276 and S.2575 will allow our patients with traditional Medicare to directly access our services.

Our staff met with the Newark, NJ staff of Senator Cory Booker in the summer. Just this past week we met with Congressman Leonard Lance of the 7th District of NJ at his Westfield office. Representative Lance voiced his support for the legislation.

It is of note that the APCA does not increase services currently offered by Medicare, and will NOT increase costs to the plan, it likely will reduce costs incurred by Medicare. Medicare advantage plans currently offer direct access to audiologists, unlike traditional Medicare. The act allows audiologists to practice within their scope of practice and to be reimbursed by Medicare for those services. Other Federal health benefit plans allow for direct access to audiologists. Reach out to your Senators and Representatives and ask them to support the APCA today!

We thank Dr. Judie Sandler for her 32 years of dedicated service!

We all would like to thank Dr. Judie Sandler for her 32 years of service at the hearing center. She spent countless hours assisting her patients to diagnose and treat their hearing loss. She is an original founder of The Hearing Center back in 1986! Through hard work and dedication, she has helped build The Hearing Center into the premier full service audiology private practice that it is today. While she will be stepping back, an no longer seeing patients on a daily basis, you will still see her around the office. Please reach out to us if you have any additional questions. We look forward to continuing to provide you the highest quality hearing health care. Appointments can be scheduled with audiologists, Dr. Perle, Dr. Elias, and Dr. Conte.

Cochlear implant device restores hearing after years of hearing aid use

When it became clear that hearing aids weren't enough to help 9-year-old Emma Kriegstein, her parents and the audiologists at The Hearing Center knew it was time to turn to different technology to improve her hearing.

Emma, of Matawan, was born with progressive sensorineural hearing loss, permanent hearing loss caused by an abnormal or damaged inner ear. According to Dr. Eric Sandler, director of audiology at The Hearing Center, Emma's possibility to hear would likely improve with a cochlear implant, which utilizes an implanted electrode array to bypass the damaged portion of the ear and stimulate the auditory nerve.

"Patients need to meet audiological and medical criteria to receive the implant, and Emma was a perfect candidate," Sandler said.

Emma's hearing loss was confirmed when she was four-and-a-half, although she had expressed difficulties from a younger age. A neighbor referred them to The Hearing Center, which immediately recommended hearing aids. While the devices worked well for around three years, Emma's parents Elizabeth Feudale and Neil Kriegstein noticed diminished hearing in her left ear, a decline which continually worsened.

"We were shocked – even though there was a family history [of hearing loss] on both sides, nobody had trouble as a child," said Kriegstein. "We tried coming up with 1,000 excuses as to why it could be wrong, but there was no question that Emma needed help."

"We've been working with Emma and her family for several years, and we were constantly changing the settings on her hearing aids," added Dr. Stefanie Perle, The Hearing Center's lead audiologist on cochlear implant cases, and one of three audiologists working with Emma. "The hearing aid was no longer providing sufficient benefit. Her best option… was to consider a cochlear implant."

Emma received her implant this past July, and the device was activated by Drs. Sandler and Perle in August. Since activation, Feudale said that there has been a "drastic, positive" change in Emma's hearing.

"There have been major improvements large and small alike," Feudale said. "I can call for her from downstairs while she's upstairs and she can hear me. I can talk to her with my back turned and she will be able to answer me. These life improvements have made a huge difference."

"The implant has changed her life by leaps and bounds," Kriegstein added. "She has picked up on sounds we take for granted, such as a piano playing in a song, and she lights up with joy when she can hear them."

According to Feudale, The Hearing Center fought "tooth and nail" for Emma to receive the care and equipment she needed.

"The staff at The Hearing Center exhibits genuine care and concern for Emma's well-being," Feudale said. "We've been through a bunch of audiologists, and we haven't had the confidence and trust in others like we have for The Hearing Center."

"The Hearing Center has put Emma's quality of life at the front and center of her care," Perle added. "We are beyond thrilled about the progress she's made in such a short time."

Additional Services now offered at 2 of (((The Hearing Center))) Locations

We are very pleased to announce that we are offering the following additional services at the Clark Location:Auditory Processing Evaluations Cochlear Implant Evaluation

The following additional services will now be offered at our Highland Park Location Auditory Processing Evaluations Cochlear Implant Evaluations BAHA Demonstrations Tinnitus Evaluations

Please contact our offices to schedule your appointment today!

Congrats To Our Top Docs!

The Hearing Center is home again to some of New Jersey’s Top Docs for Kids!

After the voting tallies came in, we were so excited to find out that Dr. Sandler and Dr. Perle were again recognized among New Jersey’s top doctors for kids.

Not to be outdone, new member of the team, Dr. Sarah Elias was selected for the first time as well! We are so thrilled for our amazing staff. Most of all, we are SO appreciative of our amazing patients who voted for us and helped us achieve this recognition.


Stefanie Perle, Au.D., Joins The Hearing Center, Offers New Services to Dramatically Improve Hearing

Audiology practice is one of the first in NJ to offer all services outside of a hospital setting


HIGHLAND PARK, N.J., Nov. 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Stefanie Perle, Au.D., an audiologist who has a special interest in auditory processing disorders and cochlear implants is joining The Hearing Center on 11/15/2016, making the full-service audiology center one of the first in New Jersey to offer all related services outside of a hospital setting.

"Dr. Perle understands the importance of service," said Dr. Eric Sandler, Sc.D., of The Hearing Center. "Patients trust her, rely on her, and know that she is fully accessible. It's rare for patients to have good access to their healthcare providers. That's what The Hearing Center provides and what Dr. Perle will continue to do with us."

Perle earned her Doctor of Audiology degree from Salus University in Philadelphia. She worked at JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Center, Edison, N.J., and St. Peter's University Hospital, New Brunswick, N.J., before transitioning to private family practice.

"Dr. Perle has been practicing for many years, and she brings two specific areas that we haven't offered before: implantable devices and auditory processing evaluations," Sandler said. "She will offer us the ability to further develop our Cochlear Implant and bone-anchored hearing apparatus (BAHA) program." 

Perle identifies candidates for the cochlear implant device and BAHA. Instead of amplifying sound like a hearing aid, a cochlear implant sends electrical signals directly to the brain. A surgeon will perform the procedure, and Perle will conduct follow-up visits at The Hearing Center to ensure the implants are working correctly and the user is acclimating to this new way of processing sound.

"It's rare to have a private practice where you can come for cochlear implants," Sandler said. "Now, there are no audiological services that we have to refer patients to other facilities for."

Perle has a special interest in auditory processing disorders. She diagnoses school aged children seven and older, including children who exhibit signs of auditory processing difficulties at school.

"Auditory processing has a great impact on a child's learning," Perle said. "Typically, the student with auditory processing difficulties has normal hearing, but material can seem like it's going in one ear and out the other, and it clicks the subsequent time it's presented. Why is there a delay? It could be because auditory comprehension abilities are impaired."

Perle's hiring comes just a few months after The Hearing Center hired Sarah Azer Elias, Au.D., to support the expanding practice.

"In a family-based practice like The Hearing Center, I have the opportunity to get to know patients," Perle said. "I'm looking forward to working in a collaborative environment, where I can draw from all of my colleagues' strengths and provide services with other professional, doctoral level audiologists who have such a high level of skill and education."


The Hearing Center is an advanced full-service audiology practice for children and adults with three New Jersey offices in Highland Park, Manalapan, and Clark. The state-of-the-art facilities are the first in New Jersey to offer all audiological services outside a hospital setting, including cochlear implants; auditory processing evaluations; hearing aid fittings and verification; tinnitus evaluations; noise protection; and specialized earplugs for musicians. The practice celebrated its 30th anniversary this year. For more information, visit

The Hearing Center is excited to add Audiologist Dr. Stefanie Perle to its staff

Dr. Stefanie Perle will be joining the hearing center in mid November! We are presently taking appointments for Dr. Perle and the office can be reached at 732-462-8412! Our office can be reached via email at . Dr. Stefanie Perle earned her Doctor of Audiology (Au.D.) degree in 2004 from The George Osborne School of Audiology at Salus University in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania. She has a Masters of Science Degree in Audiology from Hunter College and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications Disorders and Sciences from The State University of New York at Buffalo. She began her career at JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute and Saint Peter’s University Hospital where she enhanced her clinical skills for pediatric through adult populations. After starting a family, Dr. Perle transitioned to private practice settings. One of Dr. Perle’s special interests are implantable technology, including cochlear implants and the Bone Anchored Hearing Apparatus (BAHA). Dr. Perle was one of the first audiologists in Monmouth County who was identifying cochlear implant candidates and programming cochlear implants. In addition, she specializes in the diagnosis and management of auditory processing disorders in children and adults. Dr. Perle has been invited to collaborate with several local public and private schools to serve this population of students. She was selected in 2016 as one of New Jersey Family Magazine’s top doctors for children. Dr. Perle holds New Jersey Licenses for both Audiology and Hearing Aid Dispensing. She is a member the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association. Outside of her office, she enjoys spending time with her husband and three children.


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We are very excited to announce that Dr. Eric Sandler was chosen by readers as a New Jersey's Favorite Kids' Docs by ! Patient's parents took the time to honor Dr. Sandler with a nomination for his work with their children! We were told many parents composed beautiful testimonials about the exceptional care Dr. Sandler had provided to them. This December, the full list of NJ family Kids favorite Docs will be featured in print and on line. We are very excited about this honor and look forward to the December 2016 issue of NJ Family to see the write up about Dr. Sandler!

Welcoming our newest Audiologist! Dr. Sarah A. Elias

sarah_website_best At The Hearing Center, we are very excited to announce the addition of Dr. Sarah A. Elias to our dedicated and talented group of audiologists. Previously, Dr. Elias completed a rigorous residency at Hackensack University Medical Center. She has extensive training in treating pediatric through geriatric patients, in both private practice and hospital settings. In 2014, Dr. Elias received the Joan Fox Award from the Long Island Speech-Language-Hearing Association (LISHA) in recognition of outstanding scholarship and service to the speech, language and hearing field. Dr. Elias will be seeing patients primarily in the Manalapan and Highland Park offices. The addition of Dr. Elias to our staff will allow us to expand our hours of operation in both the Highland Park and Manalapan offices. To better serve our patients, we have also recently upgraded all of our diagnostic equipment as well as all three office locations. The addition of Dr. Elias will round out our current phase of expansion and we look forward to continuing to offer the highest quality hearing health care in central New Jersey.

Are your hearing aids locked and you do not even know it?

Did you know that many places that sell hearing aids offer 'locked' hearing aids, and never tell their patients this fact? "What is a locked hearing aid?" you may be asking yourself. Well, let us explain. Some chain stores like Sam's Club, Costco, Audigy, Miracle Ear, as well as branded private practices sell private label hearing aids. With private label hearing aids, it is likely that only the chain store that SELLS the hearing aids can also ADJUST the hearing aids.
For example, let's say a provider that offers private label hearing aid sells their practice or goes out of business, then a patient may be VERY limited as to where they can get their hearing aids adjusted. A patient cannot just go to any office to have their hearing aids adjusted. They must go somewhere that has access to the software required to adjust the hearing aids. Places that offer private label hearing aids often use this as a selling point. They advise their patients they can go to any of their stores and have their hearing aids serviced. Often those stores are very regionalized and many in the past have gone out of business.
When you come to The Hearing Center, we only offer hearing aids from major manufacturers. We do not try to obscure who makes the hearing aids we offer or what specific technology level those hearing aids utilize. If you purchase hearing aids from us and move away, whether it is around the country, or around the world, we will work to find you a provider that will service those hearing aids for you.
Any provider that works with the major manufacturers such as Resound, Oticon, Siemens (Sivantos), Phonak, Widex, Starkey can adjust the hearing aids we offer. This allows our patients to receive the best possible hearing health care!
For 30 years, that has always been our goal as we continue to provide Central New Jersey with the best and most comprehensive hearing healthcare there is. For more information and assistance with a locked hearing aid or anything concerning your hearing healthcare, book an appointment at one of our conveniently located facilities today!

Questions answered Cont...

6. What is the trial period or return period associated with the hearing aid purchase?Any Reliable location that offers hearing aids will offer a trial period of at least 30 days, with a limited non-refundable portion of the hearing aid purchase. 7. How long should my hearing aid last? Hearing aids should be usable for a good 5 years. Perhaps a wearer will want to replace them sooner than every 5 years, and some patients will wear their hearing aids longer than 5 years. We advise patients to expect 5 years out of their hearing aids. Places that recommend you replace them every 3 years should be looked at with a healthy degree of skepticism.

8. For how many years will this hearing aid be repairable if something were to go wrong? Hearing aids can almost always be repaired. Some places that sell hearing aids will not repair hearing aids once the device is over 5 years old. They will tell patients the hearing aids can no longer be repaired. That is not true. Some manufacturers may no longer support a hearing aid for repairs, however, there are outside labs and 'all-make' repair options.

9. Can the hearing aid being recommended integrate with other technology that I use in my day to day life? Most of the hearing aids that we recommend offer connectivity options. Some connect directly with devices such as iPhones and iPads. Some require intermediary devices to connect to other technology devices. However, virtually all of the hearing aids we offer have connectivity options.

10. Are more than 1 manufacturer of hearing aids offered here? Yes, we work with many of the major manufacturers. We work mostly with GN Resound and Oticon, but we also work with Phonak, Widex, Unitron, and others when necessary.

11. Are you an independent practice or are you owned by another entity? We are fully independent. Our owners are all audiologist in the practice.

12. How long have you been in practice? The Hearing Center was opened in 1986 by Dr. Judith Sandler and Dr. Meredith Rothenberg. In 2010 Dr. Eric Sandler became a parter.

13. How can I communicate with my provider if I have a problem. We offer communication via phone and email. Patients are welcome to contact us on off hours via email so that questions can be answer and problems can be addressed when office hours are not in session. We strive to offer access for our patients so that we may provide service unparalleled at any other practice.

14. Why is there such a price range when it comes to hearing aids? There is a wide variation in hearing aid technology as well as features and bells and whistles. Not every patient requires the most advanced hearing aids, and not every patient is well served with less expensive hearing aids. A decision as to what hearing aids are most appropriate for you is determined via a needs-based assessment.

Answers to the most important Questions!

These are the answers to these questions that you would receive in our Clinics: 1. What is the cost of the device and what is included with this cost?

A. It depends upon the technology level. We look to match the technology to the patient's lifestyle. The more active the person, the more likely they are to see increased value in more expensive technology. We Currently offer 5 price tiers of hearing aid technology.

2. How many years of service, how many office visits are included with the hearing aid purchase?

A. We offer cleaning and hearing aid checks for the life of the hearing aid at no charge and we do not limit office visits.

3. Are there costs for replacement parts (domes, receivers, filters, etc)?

We do not charge for domes. In warranty, filters and receivers are covered as well.

4. Will I be able to see the same provider at each visit or the same team of providers, or is staff constantly shuffled?

Patients are welcome to request the same provider for each visit.

5. Are hearing aid fittings verified with Real Ear Measurements?

Yes, we do offer real ear measurements at all of our offices for all of our hearing aid fittings

Keep an eye out for the answers to the rest of the questions you should be asking of your Hearing Health care provider.