Cochlear Implants

A cochlear implant (CI) system helps to restore the sense of hearing for individuals with severe-to-profound sensorineural hearing loss. For individuals with this type of hearing loss, hearing aids provide little or no benefit.

A cochlear implant is the only medical device capable of replacing a sense. It works by bypassing non-functioning parts of the inner ear and providing electrical stimulation directly to nerve fibers in the cochlea. A CI system consists of two parts: an externally worn audio processor, which sits comfortably behind or off the ear, and an internal cochlear implant, which is surgically placed just under the skin.

Who Can Benefit from a Cochlear Implant System (CI)?
Cochlear implants are being implanted successfully in over 90 countries worldwide in both prelingually and postlingually deafened children and adults. While it is not possible to predict exact benefits for each cochlear implant user, the following guidelines may be helpful:

– Implantation at a young age is highly recommended because hearing is important for language development and because research has shown better outcomes for children implanted at an early age

– Older children and adults with previous speech and language development generally perform better with a cochlear implant. A long period of profound hearing loss may limit the benefits of a cochlear implant.

A Cochlear Implant is designed for:

• children with profound sensorineural hearing loss in both ears. Age at implantation may be as young as twelve months, depending on individual circumstances and local practices

• adults with severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss in both ears

• individuals who receive little or no benefit from hearing aids

• individuals with access to education and (re)habilitation follow-up programs