A cochlear implant is a common and effective method to restore normal hearing to some extent. The treatment has been performed for almost 40 years. Performed by a highly-skilled specialist, cochlear implant surgery can help you or your child perceive different sounds even over a telephone. Learn more by clicking on the button below.
Cochlear implants are electronic devices that stimulate the cochlea and provide a sense of sound for people with hearing impairments. It bypasses the damaged hair cells and sends auditory signals to the brain. A cochlear implant has two parts; external and internal. The external part uses a microphone to pick up sounds; it then sends the sound signal to the internal part of the cochlear implant. The internal part is surgically implanted under the skin behind the ear.
Hearing aids cannot help people with severe hearing-loss and inner-ear damage. Such individuals can benefit from cochlear implants. While hearing aids can provide louder sounds, cochlear implants provide sound signals to the brain.
With cochlear implants, normal hearing is not restored. But it can provide enhanced hearing by increasing awareness of sounds in the environment.
Cochlear implants surgery is a simple procedure that takes about 3 to 4 hours. You will be put under general anesthesia; then, the surgical team performs several steps:
A cochlear implant is considered an effective device to restore hearing. It has more than a 90% success rate. The 10% failure rate may occur as a result of many factors. "Super-readers", for example, seem to be able to read faster than people whose hearing is not damaged. This means the brain circuits of the individual has adapted to be organized in a different way. This supernatural visual capability may result in an inability to benefit from cochlear implants.
Cochlear implants are not considered a cure for deafness as they cannot restore the patient's hearing to normal. They can, however, improve the daily communicative activities of the patient by helping the brain receive and process sounds and speech.
Cochlear, Medel, and Advanced Bionics are three major manufacturing companies of cochlear implants. There are no significant differences between these famous companies in terms of quality. Differences are mainly associated with the patient's condition and individual needs. In the consultation session with your ENT specialist, you can discuss different brands and ask them which one may be suitable for your situation.
Cochlear implants need batteries to function. There are three main battery types available for cochlear implants; Zink-Air, Silver-Oxide, Alkaline, and Rechargeable batteries. You can compare the pros and cons and chose the one that you think is more to your preference.
Silver-Oxide and alkaline
In addition to batteries, there are other pieces of equipment that can be used along with your cochlear implant. Some people might need water-safe accessories that help them wear cochlear implants under the water. Other accessories can be used to secure the implant in place or enable you to use it wirelessly.
In Iran, hospitals and clinics are as equipped and tech-refined as those in Europe. The specialists are highly-experienced, and cochlear implants are various in type and brand. Iranian ENT specialists carry out hundreds of cochlear implant surgeries each year. The exceptional medical services are offered at a comparative cost too. While the average cost of a cochlear implant throughout the globe will surpass $45000, the same surgery in Iran will cost you approximately $11,500.
People with severe hearing loss can improve the quality of their life by using cochlear implants. These electronic devices are also particularly beneficial for young kids and infants who are in the course of language acquisition. To be eligible to receive a cochlear implant you should make sure you meet the requirements:
According to the FDA, hearing-impaired children can be a candidate of cochlear implant surgery once they are 12 months old. For infants and young kids who are in their early years, being exposed to sound and speeches is critical in the language learning process. Therefore, it is important to act fast to perform the surgery on these young individuals.
It is important not to delay the procedure; because the more you wait, the lower the success rate will be. Once you are advised to undergo the surgery, find a highly-experienced surgeon and go for it. We can provide you with a free consultation regarding the matter.
The recovery period will be 3 to 4 weeks for cochlear implants.
After cochlear implant surgery, you may need to stay at the hospital for a night or two. After leaving the hospital, you should take care of the surgical area to make sure the site is healed.
A week after the surgery, you can have the stitches removed. It will also take between two to six weeks before you can activate the cochlear. You can visit your audiologist to turn on (activate) the cochlear. He or she will take multiple measures to make sure everything is all set.
The amount of time you should wait before being able to leave Iran and fly home is between 3 to 6 weeks. Still, it is important to discuss the matter with your specialist thoroughly. You should also inform the airline staff that you or your child are wearing a cochlear as the electronic device can set off the security alarms.
As soon as your cochlear is activated, you will have to train your brain to get used to the new sound signals. The sounds and noises after a cochlear implant surgery will be different from what you remember. Wearing the speech processor constantly and on a daily basis helps facilitate the process of adjustment.
The simple and quick procedure is unlikely to be followed by serious risks or complications. But as with any surgical procedure, some potential side effects such as anesthesia reaction or infection may occur.
During the surgery, you will be fast asleep and won't feel anything. After the surgery, some mild pain around the ear and on the surgical area may occur. You might also experience a headache for a few days.
You can have the cochlear implant removed in case of cochlear implant failure. But this is a very uncommon phenomenon.
They are meant to last a lifetime. But in rare cases, they might need to be surgically replaced or repaired.
Sometime, the external part of the device might evolve and stop being compatible with the internal part. In such cases, the internal part might need to be surgically replaced.