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Cochlear Implantation: Operation, Types Of Implants, And Indications

When the hearing capacity is severely limited, even very powerful hearing amplifiers are not enough to be able to understand or learn speech properly. In these cases, cochlear implants (CI) are used. Cochlear implantation is an up-to-date and very effective method of restoring sound perception. This is a unique opportunity to restore hearing even to completely deaf children and adults.

The term “cochlear implant” refers to a high-tech invention – a device of a new generation designed for deaf patients. An innovative device allows you to get an enhanced sound perception, thanks to which a person can recognize speech.

It is known that cochlear implantation is the only salvation when there is no effect from the hearing aid. You may think that perhaps the hearing aid is simply not amplifying the sound well. No, it’s something completely different. It cannot amplify the sound and give the proper result when the hair cells in the hearing organ are affected (or when they are completely dead). Thus, it is important to understand that this implant is intended to replace the affected part of the auditory organ and not to amplify sound. That is, it delivers sound directly to the auditory nerve through electrical impulses.

Types of implants

There are different cochlear implants that differ in technical properties and appearance. Their performance is different against the background of noise, depending on the depth of input, speech intelligibility, etc.

Cochlear implants can be classified according to the following:

  • carrying options – standard, compact, rechargeable;
  • production – French brand MXM (Neurelec) (Nurelek), Australian Cohlear (Kohler), Chinese Nurotron (Nuroton), Austrian Med’El (Medel), American Advanced Bionics (Bionix), South Korean iEnjoy Sound (Enjoy);
  • Installation sites – installed in the middle ear, on the bones behind the ear (Baha), implanted in the auditory analyzer of the brain stem, and electroacoustic stimulation (Hybrid).

What to choose? With this question, it is recommended that you consult a doctor at a cochlear implant hospital India. Only a specialist can help with the selection of a quality product. It is impossible to do without examining the patient.

 The cochlear implant: how does it work?

Schematically, this device consists of a microphone that picks up sound signals before transmitting them to a voice processor that will translate them and transmit them to electrodes capable of stimulating the auditory nerve.

  • Outside, a microphone, which can be included in an earloop, receives sounds and sends them to the voice processor. Placed around the pavilion of the ear, the latter receives these signals, analyzes them, codes them, and sends them to the antenna. It lands on the head, facing the receiving antenna, with a magnet;
  • Inside, a receiver, with a receiving antenna and a stimulator placed behind the ear, under the scalp. It sends external sounds to the electrodes. Depending on the model, these are 15 to 22 in number and grouped together in a bundle of electrodes (or electrode holders) placed in the inner ear.

Indications for cochlear implantation

Among the main indications for this kind of intervention, such as cochlear implantation, it is worth mentioning:

  • Bilateral sensorineural hearing loss (with hearing loss up to 70 dB).
  • The ineffectiveness of hearing aids.
  • Absence of psychological disorders.
  • Developed speech skills.
  • Absence of somatic pathologies.
  • Readiness for long-term rehabilitation.

It should be known and understood that with long-term hearing loss, cochlear implantation can be disorienting for the patient. Therefore, it is important to prepare in advance the parts of the brain responsible for processing sound information. That is why such an operation is contraindicated for older people: it may take too much time to adapt, and achieving a tangible result will not be possible.

Is a cochlear implant right for you?

Cochlear implants can be a wonderful solution for people with hearing loss that hearing aids can no longer remedy (they can only amplify sound). If this is your case, it would be advisable to see a specialist at a cochlear implant hospital india if you could be a candidate for an IC. In the case of profound or congenital deafness, cochlear implants can restore hearing capacity. In addition, the IC is suitable for every age group (in children, implantation can be performed approximately from the age of one year)

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