Naida CI Q70 Processor

July 29, 2013 at 9:17 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants, My Cochlear Implant choice | 2 Comments
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It is 3 years now since I got my AB Harmony Processor switched on! 3 YEARS!  Time has flown.  Those three years have been a real rollercoaster of a ride.  I still wish I had never had the misfortune of losing my hearing suddenly and admittedly those days are tough.  Thank fully those days are lessening and it is thanks to my CI that I have been able to lead a pretty normal life since.

So, whats been going on?  I have made some really cool new friends among the CI world and had the pleasure recently to meet up with some at the BEA Annual Meeting in York last month.  It was at this gathering we were able to have a proper hands on play with the new processor that AB have released.  There has been a lot of talk about it in the CI world and it was really exciting to see it in the flesh and get a proper explanation from the AB pro’s as to what it can actually do!

One of the most pleasing things about it is it’s size! IT’S 40% SMALLER!  I have never had a problem with the current processors size.  My wife tells me I have big ears!  The Naida CI is so small and lightweight that when I tried it on it didn’t feel like I had it on at all.  This is fantastic for all people with smaller ears than me and that includes children.  Any parents looking to get 1 or 2 CI’s for their child should really consider the Naida.

I took some pictures so you can see for yourselves what it(and it’s extras) look like.

The Naida 70                                 Close up of the T-MIC                 MyPilot Remote Control

Naida CI  Naida TMic   My Pilot

 

There is plenty more to shout about this new processor so if you want any more info then just click on the pictures above or follow this LINK 🙂

 

Phonak ComPilot

Phonak ComPilot

Now – by using the Phonak ComPilot you will be able to connect to all your gadgets wirelessly!  The Naida processor has 5 programme slot so, if you are like me and want a programme for every eventuality then this is great.

In simple terms, when wearing this ComPilot around your neck (under you clothing if you wish to hide it) you can then connect directly to any Bluetooth connected gadget.  Listen to music on your smartphone and if a call comes in that is sent straight to your CI too.  Connect to computers, tablets, phones, TV’s (with the Phonak TV Link) and even Sat Navs too!

 

So, what’s next on the horizon!!

Well the eagle eyed of you (in the CI world) may have noticed that the headpiece on the Naida is the same headpiece as you get with the Neptune CI. (See previous posts).  Well, there is a very good reason for this.  As I have said before…….the Neptune is the only 100% waterproof CI on the market.  The clever bods at AB have linked the two CI’s (Naida and Neptune) and used the same headpiece for both.  The reason for this is that it wont be long before an AQUA PACK accessory will be released to use with the Naida.  This will not be some disposable bag that some other designs have but a fully water proof plastic case to fit the Nadia and protect it from the water.  As the headpiece has a microphone itself and is water proof it can then be used to play in the water too!!  Amazing!!  I can’t say any more on this as I haven’t seen it but I can tell you its coming!

Well, if you’ve read this far…….well done and thanks!!

I’ll update more info as it comes through.

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Exciting Times

July 7, 2013 at 6:51 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants, Speech | 5 Comments
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This time last year I was testing out the new Neptune CI Processor from Advanced Bionics.  It is a very clever device that can be made 100% waterproof.  This is a life changer and I was really lucky to be able to try it out.  Swimming with my kids again and actually being able to hear them and for them to be able to interact with me was amazing.

The local paper did an article about it and you can read it here if you are interested!!

Gray and girls in pool

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sadly I have had to give the Neptune back to the hospital.  But as with everything Advanced Bionics the future is not far away and I have some great news about their latest processor and the amazing gadgets that will come with it!!

More to follow!!

My little wind problem!!

April 30, 2011 at 1:30 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants, My Cochlear Implant choice, Speech | 2 Comments
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It’s almost a year since my switch on and about 7 months since my last post.

I have learnt to adapt to my CI very well but I still have problems in group or noisy situations.  One of the problems I have recently solved seems so simple I wonder if anyone else with a CI has done the same?  The problem is WIND!  It is a problem that all CI users have and it is really annoying if you are outside on a breezy or windy day having a chat and you are constantly interupted by this gush of wind which completely kills off anything you might hear at that point.

More recently I have been doing a lot of cycling to train for a charity bike ride.  I find the wind when cycling really annoying and actually can be a safety problem as traffic noise is harder to hear.

Well, not one to sit back and take it I have been doing some research and it appears there is nothing on the market for AB CI users to stop this wind problem.  I cant quite believe it and I am happy if anyone can correct me on this.  I have therefore found my own solution and I have been testing it out.  Not to be too smug……….but it works brilliantly!!

It’s called a ‘windjammer’ and is a little sponge microphone cover that you see people on TV using on their lapel or tie microphones.  I contacted a local manufacturer and asked for their advice.  After sending the a picture of my CI they were able to recommend their smallest ‘windjammer’ for me to try.  It cost me about £10 for 5 of them and they work brilliantly!!

Now this solution will only work with Advanced Bionics CI’s as they are the only ones with a mic in the ear.  You also have to be 100% in the ear mic or you will still get some wind noise from the aux mic on the top of the unit.

Problem solved!!! 🙂

Roll on the summer and BBQ’s and more wind!!!

Has it really been only 5 months??!

November 8, 2010 at 9:51 pm | Posted in BBC See Hear, Cochlear Implants, My Cochlear Implant choice | 10 Comments
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I’ve been telling people recently that I’ve been switched on for about 8 months or so!!  Is it really ony 5 months??!!

Since my last post I have braved the airports with my CI and managed a great family holiday understanding spanish waiters and african sunglasses and flashing lights salesmen (you know the ones………..sat on every footpath trying to flog you stuff!!)!!  I have discovered a new job though.  All I have to do is buy some crap, print some cards off saying I’m deaf, wander round to restaurants and leave said crap on tables along with deaf card and get people to buy said crap from me!!  🙂

The holiday was great and there were no problems with the airport scanners.  I just said I had a CI and they waved me through and gave me a manual search.  The plane was fine and with the CV medium setting I was able to converse quite well considering the noise.  I am also glad to say that there were no mishaps with dropping any CI’s in the sea this time.  🙂

Phone calls are now much easier amongst friends and family and it’s nice to know my folks can pick up the phone to have a chat rather than text or email

I did have a ‘moment’ last week when we were moving out bedroom around when I came across some note pads.  I opened them up and there were the written half of my conversations with Vicky when I first lost my hearing.  It’s 15 months now since that dreaded day and I must admit those notepads brought it all flooding back.  It’s still hard to believe that only 15 months ago I could hear normally (albeit with one ear).  Thank goodness for the CI though!!  I couldn’t imagine what my life would be like now without it.  No way I could hold conversations via notepad!!!  ‘Moment’ over 🙂

Onwards and upwards I say!  What’s new this week??  Oh yeah fireworks!!  Great noise!! They sound normal apart from the high pitched ones which tend to turn the CI off !!  I wanna hear them!!!

I also had a new client in the gym today and was chatting away when I asked her if my assistant had told her that I was deaf.  I got the impression that she didn’t believe me at first…………which is nice………..but I still like to explain that I will need to see faces  to understand fully what is being said.  Especially in the noisy gym.  Still,  she didn’t think I was deaf and we’d been talking for about 10 mins!! 🙂

Roll on the next 5 months!!! 🙂

PS………if you have read this far then you will be interested to know that my BBC update programme will be on the 1st December, BBC2, See Hear, 1pm.  Should be a laugh…………..I had to do some acting for this one!! 🙂

New cochlear implant offers all round hearing to deaf at half the cost

September 2, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants, Speech | 2 Comments
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A deaf women has become the first in the country to be given “stereo” hearing from just one cochlear implant.

 

By Richard Alleyne, Science Correspondent, DAILY TELEGRAPH
Published: 6:00PM BST 27 Aug 2010

The new electronic device could revolutionise treatment for the very hard of hearing as it costs half as much as previous techniques.

In the past the only way for deaf adults to have all round hearing was to be given two cochlear implants but because they cost £25,000 each the NHS has decided that it is too expensive.

 Usually adults only have one implant fitted in one ear which leads to problems in noisy situations or locating the origins of sound.

Now the new operation carried out at the South of England Cochlear Implant Centre (SOECIC) means that bilateral hearing is possible from just one implant.

The new procedure works because the system connects the implant to both ears and collects sound from two external microphones.

“We are very excited because it is a way of getting the effect of two implants for the price of one, ” said Dr Helen Cullington, a clinical scientist at Southampton University who helped carry out the operation.

A cochlear implant is an electronic device that can help both adults and children who have a severe to profound hearing loss because through disease or genetics their cochlear is damaged.

It has two parts: an internal receiver and wire, technically called as electrode array, and an external microphone combined with a speech processor that together looks like a hearing aid.

The microphone converts sound into electrical pulses, which are then filtered and amplified by the speech processor and transmitted through the skin to the internal receiver which passes them along to the cochlear via the electrode arrays.

In the new system, there are two wires – one to each ear – and two microphones on each side of the head which feed the speech processor.

The new system means that both ears can be stimulated from just one internal receiver.

Julie Brinton, joint head of the centre, said: “Some adults and children have already received two implants, with one in each ear.

“The difference with the device being used today is that, although information is delivered to each ear, there is only one implant.”

Although around 40 of these devices have been implanted in patients in Europe, this is the first of its kind in the UK, the centre said.

The four-hour operation was carried out at Southampton General Hospital by Mike Pringle, Consultant Otolaryngologist based at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth.

Mr Pringle said: “This is different to other types of implant as it is one implant going into both ears.

“It’s not unusual for children to have two implants, one in each ear, but adults usually just have one.

“This type of device has an internal receiver/stimulator with two wires. One will go directly into one inner ear and the other will go over the top of the head, under the scalp, to reach the other inner ear.

“There will be a microphone on each ear collecting sounds from both sides.

“The advantage is that it allows adults to have bilateral hearing. Having two ears working makes it easier to hear in noisy backgrounds and also helps with localisation, or hearing where sounds are coming from.

“Also, because there is only one processor and one internal receiver this makes this device significantly cheaper than two separate implants.”

The recipient of the implant, who wishes to remain anonymous, has been deaf all her life and used hearing aids until now.

Early tests showed the system was working but it will be four weeks before they can be sure.

Dr Cullington said: “Following the surgery she will need to wait for four to six weeks before the device is tuned and she can begin to have auditory rehabilitation to encourage her listening with the new sensation she will experience.”

Is a Cochlear Implant really that good?

August 12, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants | 15 Comments
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Since my ‘switch on’ nearly 10 weeks ago I find myself making great progress in the old sound department but with the improvements continuing on a daily basis I am finding I’m forgetting what it was like when I was just using a hearing aid.  I get asked by friends if the implant is really that good and I find myself saying………’Oh yes……….it’s 500 times better than the hearing aid’!  I should add that I can only comment on my own experiences and remind you that before my CI I was totally deaf (unaidable) in my right ear and profoundly deaf in my left ear.

So………..why is the CI so much better than the HA??  For me it’s easy.  All I have to do is take my CI off and put my HA in.  Voila!!  I can now hear sod all apart from loud tinny sounds that I have to really concentrate on to work out what it is.  If I was to have a conversation now with just the HA I would have to turn my ear towards that person, screw up my eyes and really focus on the mouth of that person…………..then I would have to say………’sorry, I didn’t quite get that………..what did you say’?

I hate the sound of my HA so much now and the quality of sound that I get from it is so poor it actually messes with my CI sound!!  I therefore have ditched the HA………….not quite for good……..as I am going to try to get it re-tuned next month……….but pretty much forever!!!  Yay!!

I think the CI is so good that the only thing I can think of that HA’s are better than CI’s with is the batteries!!  That’s it!!  The CI out ranks, out performs and out thinks the HA on every other level!!

So, what am I able to do now that I couldn’t before??  The list is endless and everything I am about to mention I was not able to do or hear with the HA:-

I can hear simple every day sounds like the Kettle, Microwave, Fridge beeping to tell me I’d left it open, a knock at the door, traffic noise, birds singing, a bumble bee buzzing nearby, the squeak on the kitchen door, my cats meowing and purring…………as I said, the list goes on!!!  Environmental sounds are pretty much normal!!
Now the harder stuff to master!!
I can listen to my MP3 player and enjoy 80% of the music I play!
I can listen to a Harry Potter audio book and make out 99% of the words!
I can hear the TV and use the subtitles (some programmes differ) only as and aid not a requirement!
I can use the mobile phone for simple conversations with familiar voices! (I still have a lot of work to do on this!)
In the last week I have found that I am able ear wig on conversations in the car and join in the chat too, whilst sitting in the front and hearing what was being said in the back seat!!
I have also been able to use the phone to hear and answer security questions about my bank account before having to hand the phone back to a member of the bank staff to finish the conversation for me.  That was tough but satisfying at the same time.
I have been able to attend a social event with loud music and have conversations with people without struggling too much!!  I did have to stop one person and asked if they were from Ireland…………as I was struggling to make out her words!!  At least I could tell where she was from!!
All in all the CI IS 500 times better than the HA if you have profound hearing loss!!  Remember, all mentioned above was impossible to achieve with just the HA!!Other pro’s are it is so much more comfortable to wear!  No more horrible plastic ear pieces and no more horrible feedback and buzzing when laughing or eating!!I have the Advanced Bionics and I’m glad I have chosen this model over the others.  The sound quality at the moment is equal to if not better than the MedEl or Cochlear makes (although this is a contentious subject with users of the other makes).  All implants work well and whichever anyone chooses will do well for them.  I prefer the AB for other reasons.  The AB has a microphone that sits nicely in the ear canal and uses the natural shape of the ear to capture the sound and send it into my brain.  This also means that when using a telephone you can just put it to your ear like a hearing person would rather than hover it over the mic at the top of the ear.  I also like the fact that I have 4 rechargeable batteries, rather than throw aways, that last between 8 and 12 hours a day.  As long as I remember to charge them and carry a spare with me!!!  The AB also has a clever bit of software called ClearVoice which acts to soften harsh sounds and make everyday listening even more comfortable.

A slight word of caution………..the CI is never going to be perfect and I will always need it to help me hear….

BUT……

Is a Cochlear Implant really that good?  You bet your life it is!! 

Switch on update – day 15!

June 24, 2010 at 8:02 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants, Language, My Cochlear Implant choice, Speech | 5 Comments
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Well the 2 weeks since my switch on have flown by.  I’ve been so busy with work and social stuff with friends and family that I haven’t had too much time to really think about my CI progress.

The initial switch on was a bit of a disappointment as you may have already read.  But in hindsight it wasn’t as bad as I thought and to be able to make out some music on my MP3 player after only 4 hours is pretty amazing.  After only 2 days though the volume on my CI had dropped so much that I was really struggling with it on its own as everything I was hearing seemed like a robotic whisper.  So I kept using my HA in my other ear and that seemed to boost the volume on both sides by giving me a stereo effect.  I definitely was enjoying that.  First time to hear something out of both sides of my head in over 10 years!! 🙂

The external unit itself is very comfortable on my ear but I was having a problem with the cable sticking out and getting it caught on clothing as well as offering something tempting for my girls to grab hold of!!  I have over come this problem by wrapping the cable around my external unit which shortens the cable perfectly to attach the magnet.  No more sticking out cable!! Yay!!

Before                                                                                                                                                              After

I went back for re-tuning and a volume increase after 7 days and boy did I need it.  This time my volume was increased a huge amount and my IDR was put up from 60 to 80. (Which apparently after only 7 days is pretty good).  I also got them to take off my loop setting and go with normal on setting 1, clearvoice medium and high on settings 2 & 3.  The loop setting was pointless as my recognition of speech was still so poor it was a waste of a setting.

After my re-tuning I found the next few days a real struggle.  Everything was so much louder and distorted that it was not fun.  Gradually though after 2 to 4 days the sound has become much more comfortable and dare I say…….NORMAL!!  Yay.  I still find speech really tough but people are sounding less robotic and more how I remember them. My little girls however are still like little robots……but sounding like very cute little robots………most of the time anyway!!

I have been using my CI more and more without my HA since my re-tuning and it has been fine most of the time.  Sounds are becoming normal.  I find when I have my HA on too I get two different sounds entering my head too.  Quite amusing I think at the moment.  A text message on my phone comes through in two different tones!!  It could be confusing I suppose but I’m riding along with it and enjoying it most of the time.

Social situations are still very tough and this is what I miss so much.  The world cup is on and we are having BBQ’s round at friends houses for the games and I miss joining in the banter with my mates & slagging off the commentators because they don’t know what they are talking about.  Having said that though my mates are being really good with me and not getting bothered when I say pardon or sorry, I didn’t get that!!  (Until they get drunk that is and still think it helps to get closer to my ear for me to hear them rather than letting me see their faces!!  No names mentioned Stu 🙂 )

I mentioned sounds are becoming more normal now.  Well, I have to say they are generally.  I still can’t make out the radio or the TV but other than that I reckon it’s nearly all there.  I noticed a squeak on one of our doors the other day and asked my wife when that had started.  ‘Months ago’ was the reply.  That’s nice……..squeaky doors again!! Yay.  Other sounds are the birds chirping, the owl in the evening twit twooing, indicators in the car, aeroplanes and helicopters overhead, branches rustling in the wind, cat meowing and purring………the list goes on!!  In fact, when I take the CI off now and just wear the HA the sound I hear is so poor it just shows how good the CI is.  I’m still frustrated by speech but I have to keep reminding myself it’s only been 2 weeks!!!

A quick mention of my tinnitus.  It’s still there 😦 but hardly noticeable when I’m wearing the CI.  As soon as I take the CI off it’s there straight away with that lovely washing machine sound!!  Ah well, at least it’s gone most of the time.  Maybe that will calm down in time too??!!

To sum it up………my hearing is loads better, I’m frustrated by speech and social situations, my girls are still robots although other people are sounding more like themselves again, environmental sounds are pretty normal now, music on my MP3 is about 70% now (compared with zero before!) and I’m going back to the hospital in 2 weeks to get re-tuned and tested again.

I’ve had my doubts about the CI but I’m definitely pleased I got it done!!  Roll on the next few weeks of improvement!! 🙂

‘Ticka ticka ticka ticka ticka’

June 13, 2010 at 8:37 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants | 9 Comments
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So it’s been 4 days now since I got switched!  Here is a quick update on what’s been happening on the hearing front!!

The day after my switch on I had to carry on as normal so no real time to get used to the new noises.  In order to cope with that I have been wearing my hearing aid and CI at work and then when I get some time to myself just using the CI.  It seems to be working out quite well as when I wear both I suddenly go into stereo sound.  At first it wasn’t anything I could really make out but over the last few days the CI sounds have been getting just a little bit clearer and I am re-discovering sounds that I haven’t heard since I lost my hearing last year.

So what have I been hearing and knowing what the sounds are?

The list is quite long so I’ll just give you the best bits – footsteps, the kettle, the microwave, the toilet flush, water running from a tap, traffic noise, my mobile phone text alert, the land line dial tone, my cat purring and my Grandmothers carriage clock ticking!!!  That was the odd one.  I struggle to pick up louder sounds and then suddenly I can hear this ‘ticka ticka ticka ticka ticka’ noise coming through my head!!  I didn’t belive it was the clock at first and thought something maybe wrong with my CI so I made sure nothing was on in the house to make any noise and went and stood next to the clock.  Sure enough…….’ticka ticka ticka ticka ticka’!!   That ticking used to annoy the hell out of me when I could hear normally……….I love it now 🙂

What can I hear that I can’t quite understand?  This generally is anything that involves talking…….like the radio, the TV, the telephone etc.  I can hear them all now better than before but it is just noise at the moment.  I managed to ring my wife on the mobile phone and had a basic chat with her for a minute or so.  I could work out most of what she was saying but she was keeping it very simple……….’how are you?’ and  ‘what are you doing?’

I have also been plugging into my MP3 player.  Music is not as I quite remember but to go from nothing to something is great and gives me real hope that in a few months time I may be able to enjoy some tunes again!!

What’s next then?  Well, my volume on the CI has reduced so much everything seems to be a whisper at the moment.  This is normal apparently as you brain gets used to hearing again.  I have a second re-tuning appointment on Wednesday where I will get my volume turned up.  I can’t wait for that as everything should start to sound a bit clearer again.

Ha ha………as I’m sitting here typing this (I can hear me tapping the keys too!) I can hear it again!!!

‘Ticka ticka ticka ticka ticka’  🙂

More news after Wednesday.

The big ‘Switch On’ !

June 10, 2010 at 8:55 pm | Posted in BBC See Hear, Cochlear Implants, My Cochlear Implant choice | 13 Comments
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Today is my first full day as a fully fledged Cyborg.  It has been a long hard journey to get to this point today and I wish I could say that it is all smelling of roses right now………but I can’t……….not yet anyway!

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still very positive about the whole Cochlear Implant journey but today it feels like my hearing has taken a step backwards in some respects as well as a step forward in others.  For someone who has had normal hearing for most of my life it has been hard to keep my expectations in check.  No matter how hard you tell yourself not to expect much, you can’t help but have that secret hope buried deep down that suddenly everything will be normal again.  I’ve told so many people exactly that, that maybe I forgot somewhere down the line to tell myself!!

For those of you who don’t know, this is what happens at ‘switch on’.

Firstly you are attached with your external unit.  In my case I have the Advanced Bionics.  You sit there and are asked to listen for some beeps and to tell them to stop turning it up once the volume seems loud but comfortable.  They did this for all the 16 electrodes in my head.  I was pleased to say that I could hear them all.  Although it was the strangest sounding noise I have ever experienced.  I can only describe it as ‘controlled tinny robotic sounding tinnitus’.  Not horrible tinnitus but right inside the head where tinnitus seems to lurk none the less.

Then, once the levels have been set, the audiologist switches you on.  Sound immediately flowed into my right hand side in a very mechanical way.  Exactly what I had expected or what I thought I’d expected because this is something that, no matter how you describe it or read about it, you just cannot understand until it actually happens to you.  Someone I was talking to today compared it to child-birth!!  Before all you ladies start sending me evil messages it was only a comparison in the fact that you can never know what child-birth is like until you actually experience it for yourself!!  I for one will stick to the CI switch on thank you very much!!! 🙂

So.  What can I hear now?  Well, on activation I very quickly began to pick out voices.  Not very clearly and nothing I could really understand but voices none the less.  Everyone did and still does sound like they have been sucking on helium balloons before they speak!!! 

Voices are definitely the hardest to work out.  I can however hear random things like…..me typing this……..and the kettle and microwave.  I could hear the radio in the car a little and managed to work out a song that was playing.  You’re the one that I want……ooh……oooh……oooooh!! 🙂  Yes it was dodgy local radio but I haven’t been able to control the radio for a while!!  I’m looking forward to getting talksport back on soon!!!

I am strangely finding that I can pick out music better than expected.  I came straight home with my box of gadgets you get with the Implant and went straight for the MP3 player.  Plugged straight in and managed to make out Pink Floyd and Red Hot Chilli Peppers!!  That was only after 2 hours activation!!  I haven’t had the chance to try it again yet today but I’ve been told not to rush it as I don’t want to overload the old brain.

I have been back to work today and found I need to use my Hearing aid in the other ear to improve my communication.  Again, I have been told to try to use my CI with and without the HA so I am sat back at home now with just the CI.  I must admit though it is tempting to use both as suddenly I find I’m hearing in stereo for the first time in over 10 years!!!  I like that a lot!!!  Even though it is still mainly noise I’m hearing………at least it’s in stereo!! 🙂

Did I start this post sounding a bit negative??  Now I’ve just read what I have typed I realise that actually it has been a really positive switch on!!  See what writing a blog does for you!!  I am already finding that I want more volume but will have to wait until next Wednesday when I go back for a re-tuning session.  Patience Graham!!

Oh…….yeah……..I can hear the dial tone on the telephone!!  I rang my wife on it and could clearly hear that she said something…………no idea what………..but hey………..that was only after 4 hours switch on!!  See this is getting better by the minute!!

Right.  I’m waffling now so I’m gonna sign off with the best part of all.  I can hear my little robotic girls!!  They will sound more normal in time but hey ho………one step at a time!!! 🙂

Quick operation update………..

May 15, 2010 at 6:23 pm | Posted in Cochlear Implants | 18 Comments
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Well, I’m back from Hotel Southmead in Bristol feeling pretty good at the moment.

I went in to hospital on the Wednesday afternoon as my operation was scheduled for 8.30am the following morning.  It was a farely restless night as you can imagine but the morning came round quite quickly and I was visited by my surgeons registrar to go through the formalities before the op.  Whilst we were talking, all the lights went out in the hospital and then straight back on again.  He joked with me about it not being a good sign and it appeared he was right.  A builder in the area had managed to cut through a major electric cable and forced the hospital on to its emergency generator!!  Great.  Although it would have been safe to carry on with the op the policy is, and quite rightly so, that all operations would be put on hold until the main power was back up and running.  Well after another 4 hours of waiting I finally got taken down to theatre and before I could say anything other than ‘ make sure you do my right ear!!’ I was waking up in recovery wondering if they had actually done anything.  Then I felt my head and realised that it was all over.  Nice!

The whole thing was filmed by the BBC and took about 3 hours.  My surgeon was very happy with the results and I was informed the next morning that the they had managed to insert the electrodes the whole way into my cochlear, that all the electrodes were working and my inner ear was already being stimulated ready for sound on my switch on, in about 4 weeks time.

How do I feel now?  Well, the pain is fine.  Nothing a few pain killers wont cure.  My neck and jaw are a bit stiff but considering I have had a whole drilled into my skull I’m pretty amazed at the lack of pain.  Not that I want anymore!!!  I’m not complaining!!

The worst thing, apart from the tights they make you wear, has been the tinnitus, which is way worse and sounds like a train rumbling through my head.  My balance has been a little dodgy but that is improving after every little sleep I have.  Just need to remember to move slowly!!

I have been told that I do not need to go back again until my actual switch on appointment so now it’s a question of sitting back and recovering and waiting for that switch on appointment to come through the post.

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