Cochlear Implant Surgery Options
Cochlear implant surgery through WorldMed Assist is within your financial means. We work with exceptional hospitals inside and outside the US. The international hospitals collaborate with leading US hospitals, including John Hopkins and Harvard Medical, to provide innovative medical care. Our registered nurses make all arrangements necessary for the success of your procedure. Our services carry the promise of quality medical care with individual attention to your needs.
Most importantly, we provide you with a personal touch from start until well after your return home.
Options for quality cochlear implant surgery include:
- Cochlear Implant Surgery in the U.S.
- Cochlear Implant Surgery in India
- Cochlear Implant Surgery in Turkey
We also provide information on costs:
What is a cochlear implant?
A cochlear implant (hearing implant) has four components:
The microphone extracts sound from the environment
- Speech Processor:
The speech processor interprets sounds received from the microphone
- Transmitter and Receiver/Stimulator:
This component receives signals from the speech processor and transforms them into the electrical impulses
- Electrode Array:
The electrode array delivers the electrical impulses from the stimulator to the auditory nerve
A cochlear implant does not restore hearing; rather, it sends signals to the brain which interprets the signals as sounds.
It is not “normal” hearing, but allows you, through therapy and time, to learn to understand sounds and speech.
You should speak with your specialist about realistic expectations and limitations of a cochlear implant.
Each case is individual and there are no guarantees of everyone gaining the same level of improvement.
The standard cost in the United States is between $60,000 and $105,000, making the procedure beyond the financial means of many.
Surgery through WorldMed Assist gives those patients an affordable alternative.
Cochlear implant surgery
Cochlear implant surgery is considered minor surgery and is relatively uncomplicated.
To date, approximately 170,000 people globally have received a cochlear implant.
To qualify as a candidate for a cochlear implant recipient, numerous assessments and conditions must be met.
Typically, cochlear implant surgery is only appropriate if you have profound or severe sensorineural hearing impairment in both ears with a functioning auditory nerve.
Patients with mild to moderate hearing loss will not benefit from a cochlear implant.
A cochlear implant is carried out under general anesthetic.
The surgery takes approximately two hours but, in some cases, might take longer if there are cochlear abnormalities, such as a bony growth.
A small area of hair is shaved behind your ear where the implant will be placed.
After cleaning the shaved portion, the surgeon makes a small incision and the tissue flap is lifted in preparation for the next step in the procedure.
The surgeon creates a small holding area in the mastoid (skull) bone for the receiver and a hole is drilled through the mastoid bone into the inner ear so the electrode array can be inserted into the cochlear.
The incision is closed with dissolvable stitches.
As with all surgeries, there are inherent risks involved with general anesthetic.
Other risks include skin infection, tinnitus, bacterial meningitis and vestibular system and facial nerve damage.
A cochlear implant operation destroys all functional natural hearing you may have in the intended implant ear.
This is irreversible.
It is strongly recommended you talk to your specialist in detail to ensure you are fully aware of the possible risks and resulting outcomes.
Cochlear implant preparation
Before it is recommended that you receive a cochlear implant, there are assessments you will need to undergo.
- Auditory assessments
- CT scan
- MRI scan
- General physical assessment
- Blood tests
Lifestyle and support systems are also investigated for suitability.
The areas which are considered may be:
- How long you have been profoundly deaf
- Whether hearing aids are of no assistance to you
- Whether you are functioning in a “hearing” world, or wish to be
- Whether you have good communications skills (i.e. speech and language)
- Whether you have realistic expectations regarding the surgery’s results
- Whether you are committed to long-term follow-up procedures
- Whether you have post-cochlear implant aural rehabilitation services available
- Whether you have supportive family and friends.
The decision to proceed with a cochlear implant needs to be carefully thought over, with as much information gathered about cochlear implants as possible.
Cochlear implant recovery
The cochlear implant will not be activated until 2 to 4 weeks after surgery.
This is to allow the wound site to heal.
When it is time to activate the cochlear implant, your specialist will first fit the external equipment.
Then activation takes place through linking the implant with a computer.
The audiologist will activate each electrode individually and program the implant components.
Your initial responses will be monitored.
You will not instantly have complete hearing.
Time is required for your brain to adjust to interpreting sound signals and aural rehabilitation is necessary for you to learn how to best utilize your cochlear implant.
This can take anywhere from 6 to 12 months.
In addition, you can expect annual checkups and reprogramming, if necessary, with your audiologist.