Common Specialities
{{speciality.keyWord}}
Common Issues
{{issue.keyWord}}
Common Treatments
{{treatment.keyWord}}

Electrophysiology Hearing Tips

How Can You Regain Your Hearing With Hearing Aids?

Mr. S M Tarique 88% (39 ratings)
Ali Yavar Jung National Institute Of Speech And Hearing Disabilities Kolkata, PhD - Public Health
Audiologist, Delhi
How Can You Regain Your Hearing With Hearing Aids?

Loss or impairment of hearing can happen due to a variety of causes and may be temporary or permanent in nature, depending on the type and severity of the condition. One of the most common causes of hearing impairment is age. The degeneration of one's vital organs and senses becomes a reality for many people as the advancement of age happens, and the delicate insides of the ears are no different. Noise pollution, injury to the ear drum or any other part of the ear, as well as the movement of particles inside are only a few of the many reasons for loss of hearing. One of the many ways of dealing with long term hearing impairment is by using a hearing aid.

Read on to know how you can regain your hearing with hearing aids:

  1. Long Forgotten Sound: A hearing aid will help you reacquaint yourself with long forgotten and subtle sounds that you may not have been able to hear for a long time. Many times, this kind of impairment also makes us forget to notice the fact that we do not hear so many normal sounds in our everyday lives - sounds that we probably did not notice even earlier. This may include the whirring of a fan, the whoosh of the air, the pitter patter of pets' feet and so much more. A hearing aid will help in bringing about an adjustment to these sounds that you will actually end up discovering again.
  2. Technicalities: The hearing aid basically works by letting your hearing and ears readjust to the various volumes, intensity and vibrations that one feels when different sounds reach the ears. This helps in hearing better.
  3. Amplification: A hearing aid is basically an electroacoustic device that fits in neatly behind your ear where it is tucked away from plain sight. This device helps in amplifying sounds so that you can catch them and hear them more clearly.
  4. Modulation: The ENT specialist will usually prescribe a certain kind of hearing aid based on your individual condition in terms of volume, size, power and circulation. These factors help in modulating the sounds in a certain way so that they reach the nerve pathways from the inner ear and travel to the brain in a proper and effective way. This is usually done in a customised way to cater to the specific type and cause of your hearing loss.

Using a hearing aid is a matter of retraining your hearing rather than restoring it completely. These aids will be helpful in regaining a better sense of hearing within the condition you are going through, rather than reversing the condition completely.

2599 people found this helpful

Regain Your Hearing With Hearing Aids

Fellowship In Head & Neck Oncosurger, MD - ENT , MBBS
Oncologist, Gurgaon
Regain Your Hearing With Hearing Aids

Loss or impairment of hearing can happen due to a variety of causes and may be temporary or permanent in nature, depending on the type and severity of the condition. One of the most common causes of hearing impairment is age. The degeneration of one's vital organs and senses becomes a reality for many people as the advancement of age happens, and the delicate insides of the ears are no different. Noise pollution, injury to the ear drum or any other part of the ear, as well as the movement of particles inside are only a few of the many reasons for loss of hearing. One of the many ways of dealing with long term hearing impairment is by using a hearing aid.

Read on to know how you can regain your hearing with hearing aids:

  1. Long Forgotten Sound: A hearing aid will help you reacquaint yourself with long forgotten and subtle sounds that you may not have been able to hear for a long time. Many times, this kind of impairment also makes us forget to notice the fact that we do not hear so many normal sounds in our everyday lives - sounds that we probably did not notice even earlier. This may include the whirring of a fan, the whoosh of the air, the pitter patter of pets' feet and so much more. A hearing aid will help in bringing about an adjustment to these sounds that you will actually end up discovering again.
  2. Technicalities: The hearing aid basically works by letting your hearing and ears readjust to the various volumes, intensity and vibrations that one feels when different sounds reach the ears. This helps in hearing better.
  3. Amplification: A hearing aid is basically an electroacoustic device that fits in neatly behind your ear where it is tucked away from plain sight. This device helps in amplifying sounds so that you can catch them and hear them more clearly.
  4. Modulation: The ENT specialist will usually prescribe a certain kind of hearing aid based on your individual condition in terms of volume, size, power and circulation. These factors help in modulating the sounds in a certain way so that they reach the nerve pathways from the inner ear and travel to the brain in a proper and effective way. This is usually done in a customised way to cater to the specific type and cause of your hearing loss.

Using a hearing aid is a matter of retraining your hearing rather than restoring it completely. These aids will be helpful in regaining a better sense of hearing within the condition you are going through, rather than reversing the condition completely.

4249 people found this helpful

How You Can Regain Your Hearing With Hearing Aids?

Dr. Dhirendra Singh Kushwah 92% (74 ratings)
MBBS, MS - ENT
ENT Specialist, Delhi
How You Can Regain Your Hearing With Hearing Aids?

Loss or impairment of hearing can happen due to a variety of causes and may be temporary or permanent in nature, depending on the type and severity of the condition. One of the most common causes of hearing impairment is age. The degeneration of one's vital organs and senses becomes a reality for many people as the advancement of age happens, and the delicate insides of the ears are no different. Noise pollution, injury to the ear drum or any other part of the ear, as well as the movement of particles inside are only a few of the many reasons for loss of hearing. One of the many ways of dealing with long term hearing impairment is by using a hearing aid.

Read on to know how you can regain your hearing with hearing aids:

  1. Long Forgotten Sound: A hearing aid will help you reacquaint yourself with long forgotten and subtle sounds that you may not have been able to hear for a long time. Many times, this kind of impairment also makes us forget to notice the fact that we do not hear so many normal sounds in our everyday lives - sounds that we probably did not notice even earlier. This may include the whirring of a fan, the whoosh of the air, the pitter patter of pets' feet and so much more. A hearing aid will help in bringing about an adjustment to these sounds that you will actually end up discovering again.
  2. Technicalities: The hearing aid basically works by letting your hearing and ears readjust to the various volumes, intensity and vibrations that one feels when different sounds reach the ears. This helps in hearing better.
  3. Amplification: A hearing aid is basically an electroacoustic device that fits in neatly behind your ear where it is tucked away from plain sight. This device helps in amplifying sounds so that you can catch them and hear them more clearly.
  4. Modulation: The ENT specialist will usually prescribe a certain kind of hearing aid based on your individual condition in terms of volume, size, power and circulation. These factors help in modulating the sounds in a certain way so that they reach the nerve pathways from the inner ear and travel to the brain in a proper and effective way. This is usually done in a customised way to cater to the specific type and cause of your hearing loss.

Using a hearing aid is a matter of retraining your hearing rather than restoring it completely. These aids will be helpful in regaining a better sense of hearing within the condition you are going through, rather than reversing the condition completely. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an Ent Specialist.

2497 people found this helpful

When Should You Go For A Hearing Test?

Dr. (Major) Vipin Kakar Retd. 88% (84 ratings)
MBBS (M.A.M.C), M.S. ENT
ENT Specialist, Delhi
When Should You Go For A Hearing Test?

Here are 6 signs to watch out for that could indicate 'You need to get your Ears tested':

1. Your TV is blaring: Do you often find people around you shouting above the TV sound complaining that it's too loud? When you find it hard to hear the TV at the average volume and find yourself turning up the sound, this could signify a hearing loss. Doctors are seeing a growing number of patients visiting them after prolonged exposure to loud music and sounds.

2. You find it hard to hear phone conversations: Do you find yourself asking the person on the other end of the phone line to 'repeat' themselves, or find yourself pressing the phone instrument right into your ear? If you are trying so hard to hear, you might find yourself missing out on bits of the conversation as focussing to clearly hear the conversation is exhausting work. Getting a hearing test might be a good option if this sounds like you.

3. You have trouble hearing in noisy environments: When you are out dining with friends or family at a busy restaurant or accompanying a friend shopping in a busy street, all that background noise makes it difficult to hear what the people are saying. People with hearing loss often have problems masking out background noise.

4. Family members telling 'you're going deaf': Trust the views of the people closest to you, they never lie about your health. Family members often are the first to sense signs of hearing loss as they find themselves repeating things to you or calling out louder to get your 'attention'.

5. Leaning closer: You find yourself leaning closer to people to follow the conversation or staring at their lips trying to lip-read what's being said.

6. Avoiding social interactions: You find yourself staying away from social occasions, family gatherings or avoid being the first to start conversations. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an ENT specialist.

3921 people found this helpful

Know Everything About Hearing Loss!!

MBBS, MS - ENT
ENT Specialist, Ghaziabad
Know Everything About Hearing Loss!!

Hearing is one of the five senses that you or anyone else relies on for communication and a whole host of other things. Among the five senses, touch, smell, taste, hearing and sight, it is often hearing which is the most easily affected. You don't have to be a senior citizen to experience hearing loss as it is quite common among younger people as well. This problem is also getting more widespread with each passing day.

Ageing is not the only factor that brings hearing impairment. The causes are many. Certain medications, continuous exposure to loud noise, genetic involvement, injury and some medical conditions may cause hearing loss.

But if you think that you are facing hearing issues, then these symptoms should raise an alarm for you to see an ENT specialist:

  1. You find it hard to hear phone conversations: Do you find yourself asking the person on the other end of the phone line to 'repeat' themselves, or find yourself pressing the phone instrument right into your ear? If you are trying so hard to hear, you might find yourself missing out on bits of the conversation as focussing to clearly hear the conversation is exhausting work. Getting a hearing test might be a good option if this sounds like you.
  2. Your TV is blaring: Do you often find people around you shouting above the TV sound complaining that it's too loud? When you find it hard to hear the TV at the average volume and find yourself turning up the sound, this could signify a hearing loss. Doctors are seeing a growing number of patients visiting them after prolonged exposure to loud music and sounds.
  3. You have trouble hearing in noisy environments: When you are out dining with friends or family at a busy restaurant or accompanying a friend shopping in a busy street, all that background noise makes it difficult to hear what the people are saying. People with hearing loss often have problems masking out background noise. 
  4. You find yourself leaning closer to people to follow the conversation or staring at their lips trying to lip-read what's being said.
  5. Family members telling 'you're going deaf'?: Trust the views of the people closest to you, they never lie about your health. Family members often are the first to sense signs of hearing loss as they find themselves repeating things to you or calling out louder to get your 'attention'.

Options to deal with hearing loss:

Some of the options to deal with hearing loss are mentioned below.

  1. Once diagnosed with hearing problems, change your ways of communication - If you or your loved ones have been diagnosed with hearing problems, it is important that both adjust your ways to deal with the problem. Rather than getting angry at the other for not being able to communicate effectively, develop and strategize ways to make communication less problematic and erratic.
  2. Cochlear implants - This is a newer technology which has become rapidly popular in the past decade or so. These are directly implanted into the inner ear and are designed to bypass the damaged areas of the ear and directly stimulate the auditory nerve. These have become very popular, although, are not a replacement of natural hearing. It is only prescribed for people who have severe hearing loss or are deaf.
  3. Hearing aids - Although selecting a hearing aid is difficult as the patient needs to be comfortable, once it is completed, is one of the best solutions for the hearing impaired. The functionality of these devices can be extended with the hearing assistive technology or HAT devices that can focus the audio waves depending on the situations and give a more tailored approach for every individual's needs.

Prevention and treatment

Treatment: It is difficult to treat hearing loss as in most cases; it may be permanent, except sudden shocks, when your hearing might come back to normal. The only treatments for hearing loss are hearing aids or cochlear implants which can restore hearing partially.

Prevention: Prevention is the best method to avoid hearing loss and in most cases, you should wear ear protection such as mufflers or sound level reduction devices to protect your hearing. Also, practice listening to music, watching TV or movies at lower levels, especially if you are on the headphones. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an Ent Specialist.

4342 people found this helpful

All About Hearing Loss

Dr. Sunil Aggarwal 92% (21 ratings)
MBBS, MS - ENT, DNB
ENT Specialist, Gurgaon
All About Hearing Loss

Hearing loss is a common sensory problem that generally develops with increasing age or due to prolonged or persistent exposure to loud noises. It is one of the most typical problems that occurs throughout the world. If you are suffering from partial hearing loss, you may find ways of keeping in touch with your family and friends. If you are not suffering from such the following may help you keep your hearing intact for years to come.

Types of hearing loss:
There are two main types of hearing loss: 
1. Conductive Hearing Loss where the problem lies in the middle ear, eardrum or ossicles. A conductive hearing loss affects the passage of sound between the eardrum and the inner ear. Sound passes down the ear canal to the ear drum and through the middle ear, where the sound is transmitted across the middle ear by the three bones called the ossicles to the inner ear.

Causes of conductive hearing loss:

  1. Malformation of outer ear, ear canal, or middle ear structures
  2. Fluid in the middle ear from colds
  3. Ear infection (otitis media - an infection of the middle ear in which an accumulation of fluid may interfere with the movement of the eardrum and ossicles
  4. Allergies
  5. Poor Eustachian tube function
  6. Perforated eardrum
  7. Benign tumors
  8. Impacted earwax
  9. Infection in the ear canal
  10. Foreign body in the ear
  11. Otosclerosis

2. Sensorineural Hearing Loss where there is damage in the inner ear, cochlea or hearing nerve. Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) occurs when there is damage to the inner ear (cochlea), or to the nerve pathways from the inner ear to the brain. Most of the time, SNHL cannot be medically or surgically corrected. This is the most common type of permanent hearing loss.

Causes of sensorineural hearing loss:

  1. Exposure to loud noise
  2. Head trauma
  3. Virus or disease
  4. Autoimmune inner ear disease
  5. Hearing loss that runs in the family
  6. Aging (presbycusis)
  7. Malformation of the inner ear
  8. Meniere's Disease
  9. Otosclerosis 
  10. Tumors

Coping with Hearing Loss:
Antibiotics and eardrops are often prescribed to treat hearing loss and its symptoms. In many cases, people suffering from severe hearing loss use hearing aids. Hearing aids are tiny instruments that people use in their ears to make sounds louder. People who suffer from hearing loss cope with their problems through increased concentration and focus. The usual way involves reading the moving lips of the person while they talk. Prevention is better than cure and is the best solution to avoid long term hearing loss. Avoiding continuous loud noises, to the possible extent helps prevent hearing loss to a great extent.

5008 people found this helpful

All About Hearing Loss

Dr. Sachin Gupta 94% (10 ratings)
MS - ENT
ENT Specialist, Jammu
All About Hearing Loss

Hearing loss is a common sensory problem that generally develops with increasing age or due to prolonged or persistent exposure to loud noises. It is one of the most typical problems that occurs throughout the world. If you are suffering from partial hearing loss, you may find ways of keeping in touch with your family and friends. If you-re not suffering from such the following may help you keep your hearing intact for years to come.

Types of Hearing Loss - 

There are two main types of hearing loss: 

1. Conductive Hearing Loss where the problem lies in the middle ear, ear drum or ossicles.

A conductive hearing loss affects the passage of sound between the ear drum and the inner ear. Sound passes down the ear canal to the ear drum and through the middle ear, where the sound is transmitted across the middle ear by the three bones called the ossicles to the inner ear.

Causes of Conductive Hearing Loss-

1. Malformation of outer ear, ear canal, or middle ear structures
2. Fluid in the middle ear from colds
3. Ear infection (otitis media - an infection of the middle ear in which an accumulation of fluid may interfere with     the movement of the eardrum and ossicles
4. Allergies
5. Poor Eustachian tube function
6. Perforated eardrum
7. Benign tumors
8. Impacted earwax
9. Infection in the ear canal
10. Foreign body in the ear
11. Otosclerosis

2. Sensorineural Hearing Loss where there is damage in the inner ear, cochlea or hearing nerve.

Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) occurs when there is damage to the inner ear (cochlea), or to the nerve pathways from the inner ear to the brain. Most of the time, SNHL cannot be medically or surgically corrected. This is the most common type of permanent hearing loss.

Causes of Sensorineural Hearing Loss -

1. Exposure to loud noise
2. Head trauma
3. Virus or disease
4. Autoimmune inner ear disease
5. Hearing loss that runs in the family
6. Aging (presbycusis)
7. Malformation of the inner ear
8. Meniere's Disease
9. Otosclerosis 
10. Tumors

Coping with Hearing Loss

Antibiotics and eardrops are often prescribed to treat hearing loss and its symptoms. In many cases, people suffering from severe hearing loss use hearing aids. Hearing aids are tiny instruments that people use in their ears to make sounds louder. People who suffer from hearing loss cope with their problems through increased concentration and focus. The usual way involves reading the moving lips of the person while they talk. Prevention is better than cure and is the best solution to avoid long term hearing loss. Avoiding continuous loud noises, to the possible extent helps prevent hearing loss to a great extent.
 

2359 people found this helpful

Know All About Hearing Aids

BSc - Speech & Hearing, Masters in Speech Language Pathology
Audiologist, Bangalore
Know All About Hearing Aids

What is a hearing aid?

A hearing aid is an electronic device that we can wear in or behind our ear. It helps a person with hearing loss to listen, communicate effectively. A hearing aid has three basic parts: a microphone, amplifier, and speaker. The hearing aid receives sound through a microphone, which converts the sound waves to electrical signals and sends them to an amplifier. The amplifier increases the power of the signals and then sends them to the ear through a speaker.

How hearing aids help?

Hearing aids are useful in improving the hearing and speech comprehension of people who have hearing loss that results from damage to the small sensory cells in the inner ear, called hair cells. This type of hearing loss is called sensorineural hearing loss. The damage can occur as a result of disease, aging, or injury from noise or certain medicines.

A hearing aid magnifies sound vibrations entering the ear. Surviving hair cells detect the larger vibrations and convert them into neural signals that are passed along to the brain. The greater the damage to a person’s hair cells, the more severe the hearing loss, and the greater the hearing aid amplification needed to make up the difference. However, there are practical limits to the amount of amplification a hearing aid can provide. In addition, if the inner ear is too damaged, even large vibrations will not be converted into neural signals. In this situation, a hearing aid would be ineffective.

How can I find out if I need a hearing aid?

If you think you might have hearing loss and could benefit from a hearing aid, visit an Audiologist. An Audiologist is a hearing health professional who identifies and measures hearing loss and will perform a hearing test to assess the type and degree of loss and dispenses the hearing aids if needed.

What are the different styles of hearing aids?

Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids consist of a hard plastic case worn behind the ear and connected to a plastic ear mold that fits inside the outer ear. The electronic parts are held in the case behind the ear. Sound travels from the hearing aid through the ear mold and into the ear. BTE aids are used by people of all ages for mild to profound hearing loss.

Behind-the-Ear Aid: Open Fitting

A small plastic case rests behind the ear, and a very fine clear tube runs into the ear canal. Inside the ear canal, a small, soft silicone dome or a molded, highly vented acrylic tip holds the tube in place. These aids offer cosmetic and listening advantages and are used typically for adults.

Receiver-in-Canal Aids

These aids look very similar to the behind-the-ear hearing aid with a unique difference: the speaker of the hearing aid is placed inside the ear canal, and thin electrical wires replace the acoustic tube of the BTE aid. These aids also offer cosmetic and listening advantages and are typically used for adults.

The in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aid is made to fit the size and shape of a person’s ear canal. A completely-in-canal (CIC)hearing aid is nearly hidden in the ear canal. They usually are not recommended for young children .They are the smallest aids available and offer some cosmetic and listening advantages.

Do all hearing aids work the same way?

Hearing aids work differently depending on the electronics used. The two main types of electronics are analog and digital.

Analog aids convert sound waves into electrical signals, which are amplified. Analog/adjustable hearing aids are custom built to meet the needs of each user. The aid is programmed by the manufacturer according to the specifications recommended by your audiologist. Analog/programmable hearing aids have more than one program or setting. An audiologist can program the aid using a computer, and you can change the program for different listening environments—from a small, quiet room to a crowded restaurant to large, open areas, such as a theater or stadium. Analog/programmable circuitry can be used in all types of hearing aids. Analog aids usually are less expensive than digital aids.

Digital aids convert sound waves into numerical codes, similar to the binary code of a computer, before amplifying them. Because the code also includes information about a sound’s pitch or loudness, the aid can be specially programmed to amplify some frequencies more than others.

Digital circuitry gives an audiologist more flexibility in adjusting the aid to a user’s needs and to certain listening environments. These aids also can be programmed to focus on sounds coming from a specific direction. Digital circuitry can be used in all types of hearing aids.

Which hearing aid will work best for me?

The hearing aid that will work best for you depends on the kind and severity of your hearing loss. If you have a hearing loss in both of your ears, two hearing aids are generally recommended because two aids provide a more natural signal to the brain. Hearing in both ears also will help you understand speech and locate where the sound is coming from.

You and your audiologist should select a hearing aid that best suits your needs and lifestyle. Price is also a key consideration because hearing aids range from few thousand to lakhs. Similar to other equipment purchases, style and features affect cost. However, don’t use price alone to determine the best hearing aid for you. Just because one hearing aid is more expensive than another does not necessarily mean that it will better suit your needs.

A hearing aid will not restore your normal hearing. With practice, however, a hearing aid will increase your awareness of sounds and their sources. You will want to wear your hearing aid regularly, so select one that is convenient and easy for you to use. Other features to consider include parts or services covered by the warranty, estimated schedule and costs for maintenance and repair, and the hearing aid company’s reputation for quality and customer service.

1 person found this helpful

HOW TO PRESERVE YOUR HEARING

Mr. Sanjay Kumar Sahoo 90% (73 ratings)
Bachelor of Audiology & Speech Language Pathology (B.A.S.L.P)
Audiologist, Delhi

Now, today's world is suffering from many unknown ailments, due to our modern lifestyle, diet and many more. One of the most hazardous problems today's world is suffering from is ear related i. E ringing sound or tinnitus with vertigo and hearing loss. So as an audiologist my request and advice to all to avoid unwanted loud sound and protect your hearing by either wearing ear plugs or ear muffs or by avoiding such detrimental situations by wiseness, because tinnitus is mostly related to your duration of noise exposure. Because your health is in your hand. So you people decide.

1 person found this helpful

Cochlear Implants - Implantable Hearing Solution For The Hearing Impaired!

Aster Cmi Hospital 90% (665 ratings)
General Surgeon, Bangalore
Cochlear Implants - Implantable Hearing Solution For The Hearing Impaired!

A cochlear implant is a small electronic device that can help improve the hearing of people with severe, irreversible hearing loss. Although a cochlear implant does not restore normal hearing, it can allow a person to hear and understand more speech than was possible with a hearing aid.  For a child, this could mean an opportunity to develop listening and speech skills and the potential to attend school with hearing peers. For adults, a cochlear implant could reduce social isolation and improve communication.   

The Implant 
The cochlear implant is a device that is placed in the inner ear.   The implant system has three primary parts:  

  1. Microphone and Transmitter —The headpiece and transmitter is worn above the ear to pick up sounds. These sounds are sent to a speech processor.  
  2. Speech Processor — A speech processor is worn externally, behind the ear like a hearing aid, to convert sound into a digital code that is transmitted to an implanted stimulator.  
  3. Implanted Stimulator — The implanted stimulator is a small component placed under the skin behind the ear. It receives a digital code from the speech processor and sends it to the auditory or hearing nerve. 

The brain interprets this signal and it is recognized as sound.  The small headpiece and transmitter is held in place by a magnet coupled the implanted stimulator, under the skin.  

The Evaluation  
Tests are done to determine if a child is a candidate for a cochlear implantation. Patients are selected based on medical and hearing histories and test results as well as findings.  The evaluation, which differs slightly for children and adults, includes the following:  * 

  1. Medical Evaluation — Conducted by the cochlear implant surgeon who will take the medical history, examine your ears and explain the surgical process.
  2. CT Scan of the Temporal bone and MRI Brain and Cochlear imaging - This computerized tomography (CT) scan allows the surgeon to evaluate the ear's internal structure, recommend which ear to implant and may provide information as to the cause of deafness.
  3. Audiological Evaluation — This evaluation involves a hearing test to confirm the type and degree of hearing loss, hearing aid evaluation to assess the benefit provided by a hearing aid and aided speech recognition testing to determine if a hearing aid might provide greater benefit than an implant.  
  4. Psychological Screening — This screening is conducted by psychologist to assess the feelings about hearing loss and the cochlear implant, such as the reasons for seeking the implant and the expectations.  
  5. Cochlear Implant Counseling — At this time, if one is a candidate for cochlear implant, possible benefits and limitations will be explained and one will be provided with information to select the device.  

Surgery  
Before the surgery, one will meet with an anesthesiologist and and complete any necessary tests. Patients generally remain in the hospital overnight and return home the day after surgery.  

Implant surgery is performed under general anesthesia and takes about three hours. During the operation, a surgeon will anchor a receiver-stimulator device in the temporal bone in the skull and insert what is called an "electrode array" into the cochlea, the small snail-shaped structure in the inner ear that contains the hearing organ.  First, an incision is made behind the ear to expose the temporal bone. The surgeon then positions the implant component against the bone. A hole is made in the temporal bone with a microscopic drill, allowing the surgeon access to the cochlea. A small hole is made in the wall of the cochlea and the electrode array is gently guided into the cochlea. The internal receiver is secured in place on the skull bone with sutures and the incision is closed. A sterile dressing is placed on the incision.  

To qualify for a cochlear implant, patients must meet the following criteria:  
Adults age 18 and older have:  

  1. Overall good health 
  2. Severe hearing loss in both ears 
  3. Limited benefit from conventional hearing aids determined by a trial period, when appropriate, of about three months  
  4. Psychological and emotional stability  
  5. Realistic expectations of the implant  
  6. No ear conditions or other medical conditions that would interfere with surgery  
  7. Ability to participate fully in a follow-up   

Children age 1 to 17 must have:  

  1. Overall good health  
  2. Severe hearing loss in both ears 
  3. Limited benefit from conventional hearing aids  
  4. Realistic expectations of the cochlear implant  
  5. No ear conditions or other medical conditions that would interfere with surgery  
  6. Family commitment to comply with all evaluations before and after surgery  
  7. Enrollment in a post-operative rehabilitative and educational program that supports the use of cochlear implants and the development of hearing skills  

Follow-Up 
Following surgery, patient will return home for four weeks to allow time for swelling to subside and the incision to heal. After several days, the incision may be wet during bathing or showering.

Device Programming

The externally worn speech processor is activated about four weeks after surgery. The processor converts speech into a special code for each user. The activation and programming is performed at the Hospital. Programming for each implant is customized for the patient and takes about six hours over a two-day period. 

Testing 
Visit at regular intervals for device checks and re-evaluation. During these visits, the implant and equipment are checked and performance is measured. Re-testing generally occurs at one, three and six months and one year following the initial device fitting. Then, semi-annual or annual evaluations are performed. Each session for adults involves about three hours.  

Outcomes  
Benefit from a cochlear implant usually improves with time but can't be guaranteed. Rehabilitation after surgery is key to maximizing the benefits of the cochlear implant. Most people with these implants are able to engage in hearing activities, such as listening to a Walkman, enjoying a movie, using a phone and participating in social activities.  The motivation is critical to the success of the implant. Use the device during all waking hours, Listen, speak and interact with others as much as possible, Utilize visual cues when adjusting to the implant, but gradually decrease the use of visual cues when ready, Ask others to identify unfamiliar sounds so they become familiar.  

Many people have questions about cochlear implants, how they work and what to expect from the surgery. Here are some common questions and answers-

Will a cochlear implant restore normal hearing for people who are deaf? 
No, a cochlear implant does not restore normal hearing. It is a communication tool but not a "cure" for deafness. When hearing functions normally, parts of the inner ear convert sound waves into electrical impulses. These impulses are sent to the brain, where they are recognized as sound. A cochlear implant simulates that process. An implant, supplemented with listening therapy, can help people recognize sound, including speech.  

Are there risks in cochlear implant surgery?  
Risk is inherent in any surgery requiring general anesthesia. However, the surgical risks for cochlear implantation are minimal and most patients require only a one-day hospital stay and have no surgical complications.

Will I need more surgery as new technology becomes available?  
The implanted unit is designed to last a lifetime. The externally worn speech processor, which is responsible for converting sound into code and sending the information to an internal unit, is dependent on software that can be upgraded as technology improves.  

Will my child outgrow the internal device and require a new one?  
No, the cochlea is fully formed at birth and the skull structures achieve almost full growth by age 2. The electrode array is designed to accommodate skull growth in children.  Should I wait for new cochlear implant technology?  No, the design of the surgically implanted receiver and electrode array has changed relatively little during the history of cochlear implants. However, speech-coding strategies, which are responsible for delivering the signal to the internal unit and are stored in the externally worn speech processor, have improved significantly over the years. The speech processor can incorporate new technology when available.  

Can people with cochlear implants identify environmental noises as well as speech?  
Cochlear implants provide a wide range of sound information. Performance in speech perception testing varies among individuals. With time and training, most patients understand more speech than with hearing aids and many communicate by telephone or enjoy music.  

Can people with cochlear implants swim, shower and participate in sports?  
Yes, people with implants can swim, shower and participate in virtually all types of sport activities when they are not wearing the external equipment. The only restriction relates to skydiving and scuba diving because significant changes in air pressure are not advised. Participation in all other athletic activities is unrestricted, although protective headgear is always recommended.  In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3160 people found this helpful
Icon

Book appointment with top doctors for Electrophysiology Hearing treatment

View fees, clinic timings and reviews