Year implanted: 2013
Age when implanted: 66 years
Age when piece written: 71 years
Cause of hearing loss: Unknown, progressive, possibly partially noise related
I am a late deafened adult. I suppose I started to lose my hearing in the late 1960s but like most people I just ignored it, and it wasn’t for at least ten years before it started to become a problem that just got steadily worse.
It wasn’t until the 1990s that I decided to get checked out and was given two analogue in the ear hearing aids. These were pretty useless and not worn very often.
I changed jobs in 1992 and had to change hearing aids as my current ones were not safe in my workplace. I got two digital hearing aids, which were very good.
Over time I got stronger ones and then my audiologist asked if I had considered cochlear implants (thanks to that wonderful man Jack Ashley, NICE had approved them for adults).
I thought this was a great idea; I took early retirement in 2002 and set off to see the world I had always wanted to see, it was not until 2011 that I again looked at the cochlear implant option.
Surprisingly my hearing test showed I had 52% speech understanding and the NICE limit was 50% so I was not eligible.
I waited another year and on repeat testing I scored 49% & 51% in different ears; my surgeon wanted to go ahead so I had to get special agreement from my NHS Trust ….they agreed. I had all the tests and an MRI scan and was found suitable for an implant.
I was implanted in June 2013. I was temporarily given the Advanced Bionics Harmony processor as the release date for the Naida was delayed. I got my Naida just before Christmas 2013 and have not looked back.
I was hearing tremendous new sounds that I had not heard for many many years.
I put my hearing loss down to all the noise I submitted myself to with those “swinging sixties bands” and total disregard to protecting my ears whilst working in noisy places.
Having a cochlear implant has totally changed my life and I think it was the best thing I have done for many years.
Would I do it again? Oh yes in a heartbeat, and if a second one was offered I would be first in line.