cochlear implant - Archive

10 Tips for Music Appreciation With a Cochlear Implant

August 9, 2016 in Hearing Loss & Deafness, Technology

 

 

An a cappella singer and bilateral implant recipient, Keri Reynolds understands how important music appreciation is for many cochlear implant recipients. Prepared with patience and positivity, Keri began the journey of relearning how to appreciate music. Keri is part of the MED-EL USA Team and shares with us her personal top tips for music appreciation with a cochlear implant.

“Music shaped my world and adds listening beauty. It is truly the stuff of life.”

As a cochlear implant user for over 10 years, some of the most frequently asked questions I receive from new and existing CI recipients are: “What about music?” “Does music sound like you remember?” “Does it sound good?” I suppose recipients ask these questions because music is so much a part of who we are. It seems that whenever music starts, we involuntarily respond with foot tapping, fingers snapping, and hands clapping. We react because we enjoy it and music moves us to join in.

Read more . . . Music Appreciation

Born without hearing, an 11-year-old takes on the National Spelling Bee

May 26, 2016 in Hearing Loss & Deafness

 

 

Washington Post
By Joe Heim
May 24, 2016

As he walked out of his elementary school last week, fifth-grader Neil Maes heard the clapping from his fellow students lining both sides of the hallways. He heard them cheer and yell his name, and he heard them wish him luck as he headed off to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee, which starts Wednesday morning at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Md.

That the shy 11-year-old from Belton, S.C., can hear anything at all is a testament to technology, to a never-quit attitude and to faith, say his parents, Christy, a preschool teacher, and Peter, an aircraft mechanic.

The Maeses, who found out their son was severely hearing-impaired just days after he was born, have been working nonstop since then to help him have hearing that’s as close to normal as possible.

When the couple learned that their son couldn’t hear, they were in shock.

Read more  . . . Spelling Bee

Hearing with Cochlear Implants

March 17, 2016 in Technology

 

“Children with cochlear implants are more likely to be educated orally and without access to sign language. Some deaf activists have labeled the widespread implantation of children, as cultural genocide.  Others call the criticism alarming and inaccurate.”

WTTV • CBS INDIANAPOLIS
BY DEBBY KNOX
MARCH 17, 2016

March 16, 2016)- Close to 325,000 people around the world have had cochlear implants surgically implanted.  In the US about 58,000 adults and 38,000 children have been recipients. In Indiana, cochlear implants have been available to profoundly deaf adults since the 1980’s

Cochlear implants are surgically implanted electronic devices which bypass the normal hearing process. A microphone is used and some electronics are placed outside the skin behind the ear.  Together the device transmits a signal to an array of electrodes in the cochlea, which stimulates the cochlear nerve.

Read more  . . . Cochlear Implants

Man’s tattoo supporting deaf daughter goes viral

August 7, 2015 in Community News, Hearing Loss & Deafness

 

 

TattooFOX NEWS
August 06, 2015Tattoo

A photo of a New Zealand girl wearing her cochlear implant sitting with her father, who has a tattoo of a cochlear implant on his shaved head, has gone viral.

Alistair Campbell, of Taupo, New Zealand, shaved his head completely and got the tattoo to show support for his daughter Charlotte, 6, who received her first implant at age 4.  Charlotte recently had her second cochlear implant put in.

The New Zealand Herald reported that after Charlotte saw her dad’s version of a cochlear implant, she giggled, touched it, and told him it was “cool.”

Alistair told the newspaper that he would be growing his hair back, but would shave it to show off the tattoo for special occasions or if his daughter wanted to see it.

Charlotte was initially diagnosed with a mild hearing impairment, but her family learned she was profoundly deaf

Read More  . . . tattoo

Cochlear implantation in patients with Meniere’s disease study results

December 11, 2014 in Hearing Loss & Deafness, Research, Technology

 

Maney Online
Maney Publishing’s Online Platform

Few studies have addressed the benefits of cochlear implantation for the small group of patients with bilateral, end-stage Meniere’s disease, or unilateral disease with contralateral hearing loss from another cause. Our retrospective study evaluates the effectiveness and post-operative performance in these Meniere’s disease patients and discusses these findings relative to other post-lingually deafened adults.

Read Method, Results, & Conclusion of Study

Vodafone Firsts helps deaf girl experience live music

October 16, 2014 in Community News, Hearing Loss & Deafness

 

 

Vodafone Firsts, the programme that enables people to do remarkable things for the first time with the help of mobile technology, has helped a 19-year-old deaf Dutch girl experience a music concert for the first time.

Vera van Dijk, a 19-year-old Dutch girl who was born deaf and has never been to a concert, is preparing for one of the most exciting moments of her life following a cochlear implant that allows her to hear certain sounds.

Vera started to hear a small number of musical notes when she received the implant two years ago. Because she had limited awareness of the type of music she may like, she accessed social media channels on her smartphone to ask the Dutch public to help Kyteman choose the first song that she would be able to hear perfectly.

To ensure that the sounds are audible to Vera, her #FirstConcert is being composed from scratch using the limited combination of frequencies that the cochlear implant enables her to hear. It is being composed by Kyteman, one of the most popular progressive musicians in the Netherlands, who has worked with Sting and other leading artists.

Watch Video – See more at: http://www.entertainment-focus.com/technology-section/technology-news/vodafone-firsts-helps-deaf-girl-experience-live-music/#sthash.koePlM1o.dpuf

 

 

2012 Woodson Grad Wins Scholarship

May 16, 2014 in Community News, Hearing Loss & Deafness, Technology

 

Cochlear implants help him overcome deafness, find success.

10 Sound Reasons to Use a Hearing Aid or CI

April 29, 2014 in Hearing Loss & Deafness

By Gael Hannan On April 21, 2014gael_hannon

Listicle – my new word of the day.   List article listicle. 

You’re reading one right now – a hearing loss listicle (go ahead, say that tongue-twister out loud) – about  the little sounds we can hear thanks to amplification.

Sometimes a simple sound can make me pause, grateful and surprised, “I wouldn’t be able to hear THAT without hearing aids.”  In all the hoopla surrounding amplification, we have to remind ourselves why we spend so much time and energy and money on our hearing aids and cochlear implants.

The alternative is not being able hear these life-sounds.  And once we’ve had the joy of them, losing them to hearing loss can be painful.  I’m not talking about the big stuff – music, laughter, voices – but those little sounds that add audible significance to our day.  When they disappear or become fractured with hearing loss, we miss them.  . . .

Read More . . .

Research Study on Benefits of Post-Implantation Training

April 13, 2014 in Community News, Research

Invites Adult Cochlear Implant Users to Participate

*Washington DC/ Maryland/Virginia Residents Only*

What is the Study’s Purpose?
This study is looking at the effectiveness of training for adults who have received cochlear implants. We would like to determine whether a special training program can help cochlear implant users improve their understanding of speech and communication in daily life.

Who Can Participate?
Participants must be 18 years of age or older, post-lingually deafened (onset of hearing loss after having learned spoken language), fluent in English, and have had their cochlear implant between three months and three years.

Benefits?
Participating in this study may improve your communication ability, further knowledge in this area, and help determine the best training method for cochlear implant users.

When and Where?
Participation will require eight weekly visits (90 minutes each) scheduled at your convenience. There will be two follow-up visits; one at two months and one at six months following the last training session (also running 90 minutes each).

You will be able to participate at one of several Washington Metropolitan area locations including Gallaudet University and George Washington University in Washington, D.C., the Hearing Loss Association of America’s national office in Bethesda, Maryland, and the Hearing and Speech Agency in Baltimore, Maryland. 

Some of the training sessions are now available on site at the Northern Virginia Resource Center in Fairfax,Virginia 

To get more information on how to enroll in this study, please contact: Claire Bernstein, Ph.D,  Gallaudet University,at 202-448-7204, or send an email to: CITrainingStudy@hearingresearch.org

This study has been approved by the Institutional Review Boards at Gallaudet University and The George Washington University. Identifying information will be kept confidential.

Adult Cochlear Implant Users Sought for Study at NVRC

November 7, 2013 in Community News, Research

Research Study on Benefits of Post-Implantation Training
Invites Adult Cochlear Implant Users to Participate at NVRC and Other Locations

*Washington DC/ Maryland/Virginia Residents Only*

What is the Study’s Purpose?
This study is looking at the effectiveness of training for adults who have received cochlear implants. We would like to determine whether a special training program can help cochlear implant users improve their understanding of speech and communication in daily life.

Who Can Participate?
Participants must be 18 years of age or older, post-lingually deafened (onset of hearing loss after having learned spoken language), fluent in English, and have had their cochlear implant between three months and three years.

Benefits?
Participating in this study may improve your communication ability, further knowledge in this area, and help determine the best training method for cochlear implant users.

When and Where?
Participation will require eight weekly visits (90 minutes each) scheduled at your convenience. There will be two follow-up visits; one at two months and one at six months following the last training session (also running 90 minutes each).

You will be able to participate at one of several Washington Metropolitan area locations including Gallaudet University and George Washington University in Washington, D.C., the Hearing Loss Association of America’s national office in Bethesda, Maryland, and the Hearing and Speech Agency in Baltimore, Maryland.

Some of the training sessions are now available on site at the Northern Virginia Resource Center in Fairfax, Virginia 

To get more information on how to enroll in this study, please contact: Claire Bernstein, Ph.D,  Gallaudet University,at 202-448-7204, or send an email to: CITrainingStudy@hearingresearch.org

This study has been approved by the Institutional Review Boards at Gallaudet University and The George Washington University. Identifying information will be kept confidential.

 


Distributed 2013 by Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons (NVRC), 3951 Pender Drive, Suite 130, Fairfax, VA 22030; www.nvrc.org; 703-352-9055 V, 703-352-9056 TTY, 703-352-9058 Fax. Items in this newsletter are provided for information purposes only; NVRC does not endorse products or services. You do not need permission to share this information, but please be sure to credit NVRC.  This news service is free of charge, but donations are greatly appreciated.

CI, Hearing Aid Users Sought for Study at NVRC Nov. 13

November 6, 2013 in Community News, Research

UPDATE!

Cochlear Implant and Hearing Aid Users Needed

to Participate in a Study of Video Telephone Services for Lipreading at NVRC

 

Direct video telephone calls permit you to see your calling partner while you are talking with them on the phone.

A study is being conducted by Gallaudet University to investigate the level of quality that will lead to effective use of video telephone services for lipreading by people with hearing loss.

Testing will take place on Wednesday, November 13, from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. at the Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf & Hard of Hearing Persons (NVRC), 3951 Pender Drive, Suite 130, Fairfax, VA  22030

Each test session lasts for one hour.  You will be paid $20 for your participation.

** You are welcome to participate in this study even if you participated in our last study. **

Individuals who are interested in participating:

  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Must be a daily cochlear implant or hearing aid user
  • Must use the telephone (rather than TTY or Relay) regularly for most of their calls, and
  • Must have normal or near normal (20/30 corrected) vision and no eye disease.

The study takes approximately 60 minutes.  During that time, you will complete a vision screening and a brief questionnaire.  Then, while using your hearing device, you will listen to and watch a speaker saying sentences and repeat what you thought the speaker said. You will be video recorded during some of the test sets. Finally, you will provide ratings of mental effort and opinions based on your viewing experience.  You will receive $20 for your participation.

Contact Paula Tucker at paula.tucker@gallaudet.edu if you would like to participate.

This study has been approved by the Gallaudet University Institutional Review Board.


Distributed 2013 by Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons (NVRC), 3951 Pender Drive, Suite 130, Fairfax, VA 22030; www.nvrc.org; 703-352-9055 V, 703-352-9056 TTY, 703-352-9058 Fax. Items in this newsletter are provided for information purposes only; NVRC does not endorse products or services. You do not need permission to share this information, but please be sure to credit NVRC.  This news service is free of charge, but donations are greatly appreciated.

Do You Have a Cochlear Implant and a Neurostimulator Implant?

April 3, 2013 in Community News, NVRC Announcements, Technology

Do You Have a Cochlear Implant and a Neurostimulator Implant? 

An individual who has both a cochlear implant and neurostimulator implant contacted NVRC to ask for help in connecting with others who have these two implants and are willing to share their experiences.  If you are such an individual, or know someone who is, please contact cheppner@nvrc.org.


© Copyright 2013 by Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons (NVRC), 3951 Pender Drive, Suite 130, Fairfax, VA 22030; www.nvrc.org; 703-352-9055 V, 703-352-9056 TTY, 703-352-9058 Fax. Items in this newsletter are provided for information purposes only; NVRC does not endorse products or services. You do not need permission to share this information, but please be sure to credit NVRC.  This news service is free of charge, but donations are greatly appreciated.

HLAA Workshop: New Options in Auditory Rehabilitation

July 1, 2011 in Education & Outreach

By Cheryl Heppner  6/27/11

Dr. John Niparko wears many hats at Johns Hopkins Medical – or should that we say he wears many surgical masks or coats? He is the Interim Director of the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and George T. Nager Professor, as well as Director of the Division of Otology, Audiology, Neurotology, and Skull Base Surgery, and Director of the Listening Center.  Long-time attendees of NVRC’s educational programs will remember his highly-acclaimed workshops at NVRC in past years.

Every new presentation by Dr. Niparko brings exciting information, and his workshop “New Options in Auditory Rehabilition” on Friday, June 17, 2011 at the convention was no exception.

Setting the backdrop for his program, Dr. Niparko emphasized the importance of the spoken word, which connects us to one another and maximizes our communication.  He called the importance of the cochlea to our hearing akin to flipping a switch to turn on a light fixture. The hair cells in the cochlea are some of the body’s smartest cells, and they have a very complex structure.  Atop them are tufts of cilia; if they fail to beat, or fall off, or die, we get hearing loss.

The importance of speech sounds
There are 45 different sounds in English spoken by a native speaker.  Each has its own sound signature.  That sound signature is very different in a non-native speaker.  The brain learns these sounds from the time you are born.  The sounds have three dimension – intensity which comes from loudness of the speech, frequency which comes from pitch, and timing which is determined by the onset and duration of the speech.  There are regional differences and dialects.  As an example, people from the Midwest hold their vowels longer.

Dr. Niparko quipped that the 45 speech sounds for male listeners have a hole for the spouse’s voice, and this is a problem he can’t solve.

We tend to tail off frequency at the end of a word.  A change in frequency information aids in localization, which is the ability of our ears to zone in and choose the voice of the person we want to listen to.  When there are multiple speakers, we zone in with their specific pitch cues.

The effect of hearing loss

The effect of aging on hearing is one of the things we can do the least about. Hair cells are fragile, particularly for men.  A 60 year old male will typically have much higher hearing loss than a female of the same age.  Trauma is another cause of hearing loss.  It could come from damage due to noise.  We now start to see signs of hearing loss in young adults.  An estimated 8.5% of those aged 20-29 have a hearing loss.  In the future there is hope we can see continued steps to avoid the onset of hearing loss. 

Sensorineural hearing loss is almost completely absent on Easter Island.  Here in the U.S., something genetic may be the cause of the higher rate.  We now also know that medications can cause hearing loss and that some people are more sensitive to the effects of noise than others.

The impact of hearing loss
The symptoms of hearing loss are not just reduced ability to hear. There is reduced sensitivity to sound and impaired pitch resolution.  There can be loudness recruitment, which causes painful or almost painful surges of loudness.  Tinnitus continues to be an issue, although advances which can mask or suppress it have helped.  Some individuals were helped by putting sound that is just below the level of the tinnitus in the ear, such as music.

Understanding speech in noise is a great problem in sensorineural hearing loss.  With this form of hearing loss, the ear is being swamped by noise and recruitment.  Speech is remarkably resistant to corruption.  We are born with the ability to use it well, but it can be difficult or impossible to understand speech when there are multiple speakers, especially in a large room where sound is being reflected from hard surfaces. These are factors that modify the pitch and timing structure of the speech signals and create a masking effect.

Perceptions about hearing rehabilitation have been varied.  A recent MarkeTrak survey found that seniors with hearing loss often reported “I hear well enough and don’t mind it,” thus marginalizing themselves.  As a result, they often tend to adopt a less communication-filled lifestyle and reduce their social connections.  Sensorineural hearing loss has long been associated with social withdrawal, which frequently brings consequences such as decreased general health and impaired immunity.

Recent research has also shown that hearing loss could be associated with increased risk of dementia.  With severe hearing loss, an individual’s chance of getting clinically significant dementia is 70% if left untreated.  Getting a cochlear implant can significantly mitigate the effect, and use of hearing aids on a consistent basis also helps.  It is essential that we bring hearing aids and cochlear implants into the treatment picture.

Current predictions show that the percent of people with dementia will double in 20 years, and by 2050 it could affect 1 in 30 Americans.

New advances

Newer hearing aids are a step in the right direction. They look better, are more comfortable, and more of them are able to provide directionality (ability to identify direction of sound) and provide noise reduction.  They also increase the naturalness of speech and its fidelity.  But they still are not the same as normal hearing and require adjustment.

Cochlear implant electrodes in the inner ear stimulate the auditory nerve through responsiveness to electrical signals.  Modern digital technology has helped us to increase the speed of sound processing; in the early years cochlear implant users said sound had a robotic or cartoonish quality.

We have now been able to achieve preservation of healthy hair cells in the ear and stimulate the rest of the cochlea with a cochlear implant.  It is possible to wear a hearing aid in the same ear and preserve hearing while getting a more natural sound.  This has worked very well for selective patients.

Questions and answers

Q:  Which comes first, the hearing loss or dementia?
Dr. Niparko:  Someone could have reduced speech understanding due to dementia, but data in many cases showed that hearing loss preceded the dementia. Data is also beginning to show us the importance of social connections.

Q:  If someone is already exhibiting symptoms of dementia, is it too late for a cochlear implant?
A:  Based on data we have now, a hearing aid is probably much more helpful.

Q:  What are the experiences of cochlear implant users who have had chemotherapy?
A:  Several patients went through chemotherapy with a cochlear implant in place.  The implant may not be stable in many cases due to the neurotoxic effect chemotherapy can have on nerves, but it hasn’t seemed to have a permanent effect.

Q:  How good are the results with partial insertion implants?
A:  A lot of music comes into the ear through the low tones, which helps pick up the beat/rhythm and bass.  Research is still open on this.  Some people with the partial implants were not happy and came back to get implants with full insertion.  One individual has done well.  This person had hearing loss that started in high school and got an implant 30 years later.  Hear hearing aids in both ears are supplemented with a cochlear implant.  She calls it “trimodal hearing”.

Q: What about auditory neuropathy?
A:  We are seeing this more frequently.  It is a result of the brain mechanisms not putting information together well.

Q:  What are the primary predictors of a cochlear implant?
A:  An auditory foundation.

Q:  What resources are there to help learn speech understanding with a cochlear implant?
A:  All of the cochlear implant companies have online resources, and there is a web product called LACE.

Q:  What will be the impact on bilateral cochlear implants if I have carotid surgery?
A:  Today the only concern about surgery is if it involves the head, not the neck or anything below it. 
Q:  What cochlear implants make it possible to have MRIs?
A:  We now have a way to perform MRIs on patients who have cochlear implants without having to remove the magnet.  A binding procedure is used.  The important thing to know Is that we can do the scan but we can’t keep you comfortable.  It will hurt for about 10 minutes afterward because the magnets are moving around.  We couldn’t find an MRI with a Tesla (measurement of strength) of less than 1.0, so the research has used one with a Tesla of 1.5.

Dr. Niparko showed a short video from his famous 2005 study with David Ryugo where deaf cats were implanted for three months with a 6-channel cochlear implant that used human speech processing programs.  The cats responded to environmental sounds and their auditory nerve fibers showed some recovery.  Food conditioning was used, and the cats could differentiate the sound of music by Bach from the sound of music by Beethoven.

Dr. John Niparko