By LOIS KINDLE
An audiology practice like no other has opened in Ruskin at 938 Cypress Village Blvd., Suite B.
Doc Side Audiology is owned and operated by Dr. Kelly Breese, a board-certified audiologist who specializes in the treatment of tinnitus and hearing loss and is fluent in sign language.
Breese openly admits she’s suffered from debilitating tinnitus and subsequently has great empathy for patients dealing with its difficulties.
“I have a passion for learning and am constantly researching the newest technologies and treatment options for my patients, whether it be concerns with hearing, fit and programming of hearing aids, aural (re)habilitation, tinnitus treatments and more,” she said.
Breese also offers wax removal, repairs hearing aids, sells the hearing aids of all major manufacturers, can request an amplified or captioned phone at no cost (with the diagnosis of a hearing loss) and works with the nonprofit Hearing Loss Project to help anyone approved by the program who can’t afford a hearing evaluation or hearing aid get one.
Amazingly, the doctor is also one of a handful of audiologists in the country who is trained to record the brain wave activity of dogs and horses to determine if they have a hearing loss or are deaf.
“Although some universities are researching hearing aids for animals, there currently are none available,” Breese said. “But there are ways o help an animal deal with a hearing issue.”
Breese said through such testing she can certify hearing in an animal as young as 7 weeks old for breeder certification.
Breese currently sees patients in the Ruskin office one day per week by appointment only, but she is mobile, as well.
“I go to patients’ homes, if needed, ALFs, skilled nursing centers and memory care facilities [also by appointment].”
About the doctor
“Growing up musically trained as a percussionist, I know the joy music and sound can bring to others, Breese said. “I understand each patient has unique needs and goals. I focus on the hearing healthcare of each individual to properly educate, counsel and tailor treatment to their specific needs to achieve these goals.”
She’s been in practice since 2015, working first in a medical practice in Sun City Center, and then opening Hearing Aids of Sarasota five years later. In 2020, Breese leased a medical suite in Longboat Key and the Ruskin office on March 1.
“When I left to go to Sarasota, patients found me and traveled there to see me,” Breese said. “They begged me to come back, and now I have.”
Breese wants to be her patients’ anchor in hearing healthcare, the way her grandfather was an anchor for her throughout her life.
“I am committed to evidence-based, patient-centered care,” she said. “I believe in honesty and working with what’s right for you. Too many times I’ve worked with or hear from patients who cannot believe the amount of money they spent on hearing aids that don’t work and [they’ve] just ‘thrown in the drawer.’
“I love it when I’m able to assess their frustrations and adjust [a hearing aid] with proper fine-tuning and programming to make it work as it should,” she said, adding she performs real ear measurements, which objectively test that hearing aids are doing what they should.
Breese earned her Doctor of Audiology degree from the University of Arizona and received a bachelor’s degree, cum laude, in communication sciences and disorders, with a minoring in music performance from the University of Florida.
Breese is also a certificate holder in tinnitus management and a certified animal audiologist, a fellow of the American Academy of Audiology and a member of the American Tinnitus Association.
She is a single mother and lives in Lakewood Ranch with her son, Declan, 3½.
For more information or an appointment, call Doc Side Audiology at 813-588-6198, email email@example.com or visit www.docsideaud.com/.