Friday, April 17, 2009

Im learning more about CIs, her results were good. A good surgeon matters!

I talked to another lady who got CIs(two) and she got lucky, especially in the "worse" ear that had 95-110db loss. She now hears 15-25db thresholds and was so happy she got her better ear implanted. I was worried she would hear worse than her HAs since her better ear had only 85db-95db loss(250Hz to 8000Hz) The Phonak Naida V UP HA's have a max gain of 82db so she would be hearing around 10-15db with those HAs at some frequencies. Yet she says she not only hears speech but also hears environmental sounds better with either of her two CIs! I am trying to understand how that's possible compared to the best HAs. She did say that her "better" ear had some cochlear ossification which was only discovered during surgury. Perhaps this could be a plausible explanation of why she was hearing unusually poor with her HA. I feel I am hearing quite decent with my HAs.

I for one hear a great deal of environmental sounds and my hearing is actually worse than hers except in the low frequencies(75db loss at 250Hz for example) I do know that anyone considering CI should be getting a 90 day trial of the best HAs first. Not to do this is very irresponsible, sadly ive seen a few people get CI without ever trying proper HAs or getting their HAs properly programmed. They have no idea what HAs could have given but with their residual hearing, the results could have been great!

I do know that it's easier to achieve an improvement in speech comphrension since getting the same thresholds with CIs does yield an improvement over HAs but for environmental sounds, it should be the same. My audiologist is going to reprogram my HAs two weeks from now and he should get me down to 10-15db in the low frequencies and around 30db in the mids. Transposition should give me access to the highs by shifting them down to the mids. To be fair, I won't count transposition in any of the math I have done and will do. So therefore ill count it as missing frequencies above 2000Hz entirely.

Transposition will make a 4000Hz sound appear to sound like a 2000Hz sound, one which I can still hear. No HA will give me a real 4000Hz sound since I have no residual hearing in the highs that can be amplified. Oh well ive mentioned before that high frequencies 2000Hz and above only account for 5% of environmental sounds and many people find high pitches annoying to hear. Even my parents say I am not missing out by not hearing high frequencies. I am able to understand 80% of what my dad says without lip reading. It could be 90% after my HAs get reprogrammed. I also mentioned that this profoundly deaf man scored over 90% on speech. I am saying get proper HAs, find an expert audiologist that will program your HAs to the max and give your HAs a chance to shine!

She did tell me that a good surgeon knows how to properly implant the electrodes and won't rush the operation. That could be part of the reason, that and she said she's in the top 2% for CI results. In other words she also got very lucky to have such a good CI result. Her thresholds look impressive as well as her speech comphrension. I am happy for her but caution others to be realistic in their CI expectations. I am realistic and to be honest, I am not expecting CI to give me hearing as good as my HAs so of course im not getting CI till technology improves alot more and my hearing gets worse. You can see my previous posts below for more information and the math ive done.


  1. Interesting point!! Keep it up then teaching me *wink*

  2. Hi Deaf Dude, How are you?

    I am good. Let me tell you something that may interest you.

    Over the last few weeks i noticed that my hearing with CI dropped.. the high freq wasn't there so therefore everything sounds muffled. The tick tock of clock becomes boom boom instead of clear tick tock.
    I went to my Audi yesterday, had hearing test... yep i was right that my High freq had dropped alot to 100db, Audi said it's probably because my brain had got used to the highs quickly. I had tune up she managed to get me to 20 db across the board but felt it may be bit too much for me so she tweaked it down to 30 db across. That i don't mind I know i will reach 20 db soon. She explained if i am on 20db i would pick up alot (maybe too much that my brain would go in override) of quiet sounds like hearing things outside while in the house, clock upstairs in my room things like that. I had interesting afternoon and is glad to know i can reach 20db one day. And is able to notice when sounds becomes different like loss in the high freq range. I like what i am hearing now than with HA. I don't think i would ever be satsified with HA without High freq.



  3. Wow 100db aided with CI is insanely bad! How did it ever get that bad? I am very glad she was able to give you a new map that plays nice with your brain and allows you to hear the highs well again.

    Its amazing you are able to reach 20db soon. You only had 40db when you first got CI, this would have been alot worse than what im hearing with HAs. I did post on my blog that 40db is average with CI and had included your 40db results among many others. I still see alot of people getting only 40db with CI though.

    I have no idea what im missing by not hearing high frequencies, well I do notice whistles are silent(besides the wooshing of air) and I can't hear the birds my dad can. Your hearing was not only 15db worse than mine, for some reason you were hearing worse with new HAs than your old Widex HAs.

    Looking at your aided scores, you scored 30db, 45db, 60db at 250Hz, 500Hz, 1000Hz. You probably had no hearing above 1000Hz. My audiologist could potentally get me to 10db at 250Hz, 20db at 500Hz, 30db at 1000Hz. As for the high(er) frequencies, ill have to see how well transposition addresses this once it's enabled. But my audie doesn't recommend CI for me since I have too much residual hearing and he feels ill benefit as much from a HA.

    Regards, Deafdude

  4. Don't forget I was BORN profoundly deaf it would take a while depending on individual's brain to wake up and start learning new sounds. It's a long process for born deaf implanted as adult. My Audi started my ci with highs first for me to learn how to hear highs, My HA takes the lows. Granually my lows comes up to join the highs. Rolling on 8 months later, my brain now is used to the highs quickly and needed more input, so when it "disappeared" i NOTICED the difference which is amazing. Honestly i was bit embarrassed to ask the audi for an emergency appt as i don't want to go and have Hearing test saying it's still normal. But when i had the hearing test and it was alot different to previous Audiogram. I was relieved since i am not wasting anybody time. So i did the right thing.
    Whistling is high and tuneful, LOL!! well that depends on person.. I recongise my dad's whistling when i was talking to my mum on Skype.
    Voices is so much clearer now days with CI, I over heard my work collegue talking to our boss without Visual! I plugged my Ipod into my CI and had set of 15 songs to listen at randsom... I recongise Elton John "candle in the wind", ABBA "Mamma Mia" straightaway for the first time yesterday! I would never acheive that with HA's as music sounded flat with HA's.