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Last Updated: Mar 05, 2022

Learn More About Cochlear Implant!

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Dr. Shalabh SharmaENT Specialist • 33 Years Exp.Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS), Diploma in Otorhinolaryngology (DLO), DNB (Otorhinolaryngology) , MS - ENT , MBBS


I am Dr. Shalabh Sharma. The topic for today is the Cochlear implant, what are they and for whom are they used. So let’s start with what is a cochlear implant? This is an electronic device that can give a person who does not have hearing or has severe hearing impairment is the sensation of sound and these are indicated in children and adults. Indications are that a person or child with a hearing loss of more than 70 decibels is indicated for a cochlear implant, that means these are the people for whom the hearing aids are not good enough to provide them with the adequate hearing sensation which can go on to have them develop normal hearing normal language normal speech. How does this work? The cochlear implant is an electronic device it directly has electrodes that are inserted in the inner ear and these stimulate the hearing needs which carry the sensation of sound with the brain, this is not a neural, neurosurgical or a brain procedure, it is basically an ear procedure.

What are the indications in children? In children, the indications are a child born with the hearing loss or a child who develops a hearing loss as they grow older in indicated for an implant if they have a hearing loss of greater than 70 decibels and when we find that even with the hearing aid or with well-fitted hearing aid they are not able to develop normal hearing normal language and normal speech. And adults, in adults the indications for implants are usually people who have had their hearing, who are normal hearing but for some reason, in adult life, they go on to lose their hearing this could be because of an accident, because of some infection, viral infection, like mounts, rubella, missiles or trauma to the head, meningitis which is infection of the covering of the layer of the brain all of these can lead to the hearing loss or any ear disease also which could lead to a hearing loss. So once the hearing loss reaches greater than 70 decibels, usually these adults are not able to hear with the help of hearing aids, and in this case, we directly advise them to have cochlear implant surgery. The cochlear implant surgery is a short procedure it takes about one and a half hour to two hours per ear if both ears then you can say it will be around 3,5 hours for both ears and it’s a simple procedure, very effective and the postoperative, aftercare, there is a bandage behind the ear for about 5-6 days, the single stitch which is removed after 5-6 days after the procedure and in a day or two after the surgery, the child or adult wears the processor which looks like a hearing aid behind the ear and as soon as they put it on, it’s called switch on, they start hearing the sound. The audiologist and the therapists are then required, especially in children, to sort of tune of the device so that they start hearing as well as with the device and also to teach them some verbal therapy basically listening therapy we teach the children who have never heard before to start to listen to the sound so that they can go on to develop good hearing skils and with because of development of good hearing skills they go on to develop good speech, good language. Thank you so much, I hope this has been helpful.

Thank You!