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    Mary Beth

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    Kara of Canada

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Showing content with the highest reputation since 05/22/2015 in all areas

  1. Mary Beth

    First ever Med-El Meetup in Innsbruck, Austria

    Day 1- Hotel Innsbruck ...terrific gathering of most of the participants...a few were still traveling to Innsbruck .....and many Med-El Innsbruck employees. So many stories shared. Tears of appreciation shed. Lots of laughter. We quickly became a group of friends. Veronika treated us to special compositions on the piano. We are an excited group! Day 2- Med-El! Such a warm welcome at Med-El Innsbruck. We went on a behind the scenes tour of the Med-El implant production line. So many safety precautions and quality control checks. We saw implants in various stages of production. It takes 5 weeks to make an implant and all are shipped out immediately. Someone is waiting for every implant made! Viewing a shelf of completed implants made me smile knowing each one would be life changing to a future user. We were surprised to learn that we have helium, argon and quite a bit of gold in our heads! We were each videotaped separately giving info about our hearing journeys. Then we had an emotional time with members of the production team who make our implants. Each of us shared our story and our thanks. The parents shared videos and photos of their children. There wasn’t a dry eye at Med-El. A very special moving moment for us all. Followed by a much needed coffee break and more interactions. We went into the training lab for surgeons! Blue booties and all. There we used virtual reality and haptic tech to practice drilling a well for the implant.....complete with blood spattering when we drilled too deeply! I was terrible at this task. My patient would’ve needed strong pain meds for sure! We practiced inserting an electrode array into a cochlea. Way cool! And we had hands on time with the new surgical OtoPlan. Amazing tech for customized CI surgery planning. Followed by lunch and more chatting and learning from each other. Med-El really treated us as such special members of the Med-El family. After lunch we participated in workshops where Med-El wanted to learn from our experiences. Different Med-El leaders ran sessions on topics such as: -Why did we choose Med-El? What do we think makes Med-El special? -What problems have we experienced with our processors and accessories? -Service and repair showed us extreme cases of processor damage. Oh my! Stoves, ovens, microwaves, dogs, dryers....and our processors are not a good combination! They showed us revisions they have made to the Sonnet and Rondo based on user problems. A few revisions are already available and a few will be soon. We got to play with the new Sonnet mic cover design so we will not have to remove the earhook and deal with that tiny pin any longer! Yay! -We spent time at a hands on table with all the Med-El devices. The new Rondo 2 sure is pretty! All of the Med-El employees really listened to our feedback and took notes. They really care about our user experiences. Another coffee break! Each coffee break gave us opportunities to interact with even more Med-El employees. They joined us for coffee breaks and it was so nice to put faces to names we see online! Then the final round of sessions for today focused on aural rehab and the Roger Pen. We experienced a group conference call where we needed to plan a party, a noisy cafe with music playing nearby and talked about aural rehab needs for future users. It was a fun-filled, awesome, informative day! And every moment was so well planned. A quick break at the hotel and then off on a guided, narrated walking tour of beautiful Innsbruck! Excellent tour. Another quick break and we walked to a special dinner at a restaurant in town with 360 degree views named Lichtblick. A wonderful meal and lots more laughter. A wonderful day spent with wonderful people. Thank you Med-El!
    8 points
  2. Sandy

    WOW Moments

    Well, it's been 2 years since my implant and I thought I would share some WOW moments of my journey with newbies, those contemplating a CI and my fantastic Hearpeers support group. Don't get me wrong, there are frustrating, irritating moments too but the journey is well worth taking. It's taken two years but now I can hear TV and it's a way to improve your listening skills, even with the annoying background music. I can carry on a conversation with someone while driving and not have to turn to read lips or say "Pardon me, what did you say?" I no longer look for excuses to avoid family and friends get- togethers. I no longer need to let people know I can't hear, because I can. And the biggest of all is when someone says "Wow, you can hear so well" My suggestions: take little steps, put yourself out there, challenge yourself each day. And follow the 3Ps - practice, patience and perseverance! It works, I'm living proof! Celebrate your victories and when you need a break from hearing too much and are overwhelmed, turn it off and relax. We have the best of both worlds! Thank you everyone for your insight, encouragement and being an inspiration!
    8 points
  3. Kylie

    WOW moments from this month

    I wore my Audiostream all day while running errands and food shopping today. I enjoyed listening to podcasts and understanding the vast majority of the dialogue! It feels like 'free' rehab time 🐵
    7 points
  4. Joan

    WOW moments from this month

    @Mary Beth Been on my CI journey for seven years now and it amazes me that WOW moments continue to happen! My most recent…thought I had lost a small earring, then later changed my shirt. Although I didn’t see or feel it, I actually heard the earring when it fell from my shirt and landed on the carpet! Love my CIs!😊
    7 points
  5. Mary Beth

    Opportunities for meeting in person

    I enjoy meeting other Med-El users in person, especially new friends I have made through social media forums. Some ways I have been able to meet others so far..... -I traveled to NC for a Hands On Hearing workshop. We organized meeting up for dinner the night before. Great times! -I travel to NYC for my CI appts. We organized meeting up for dinner and a group of us from NY and NJ had a great meal together. -I live in a rural area but there have been a few Med-El Mingle events within a 3 hour radius. I have attended 2 so far. It’s great to meet other Med-El users. -One of the first Med-El users I met traveled a couple of hours from her home to meet up while I was on vacation in Florida. A fun afternoon on the beach. Some of these friendships have extended way past our shared CI experiences. We continue to get together as friends and share good times. Some dear friends and I are still awaiting our first in person meetings. I am looking forward to those. After spending 3 days at the Med-El Meetup last month, I am reminded of how powerful and meaningful these in person meetings can be for us. I encourage you to reach out to others (through HearPeers or other forums) and meet for coffee or dinner or a walk at a park. We have a lot to offer each other on our journeys. I hope you make some lifelong friendships this way too. And maybe post a picture to share. ?
    7 points
  6. Mary Beth

    WOW stereo sound input easily with the Rondo!

    I just purchased headband headphones designed for people to wear when they sleep or are very active. They have thin flat speakers inside the headband that can be positioned anywhere within the band that you want. I thought they may work great with my Rondos. WOW! I am speechless. I removed the speakers from the headband (they come out so you can wash the headband) and discovered that they magnetically stick to my Rondos! No need for the headband part at all. They stay in place and others next to me can not hear what I am listening to. Crazy! And they only cost $20. Wow! https://www.cozyphones.com/products/lycra-headband-headphones
    7 points
  7. MED-EL Moderator

    RONDO 2 Review

    Want to know if you should get the RONDO 2? Three cochlear implant users try out RONDO 2 and give us their personal review. Check it here in the latest post on the MED-EL Blog!
    7 points
  8. Sherri

    favorite WOW moments

    I have 3 WOW moments. The first was about a month after activation. Because I was never completely deaf I had no idea what I was missing! I remember my husband and I going for a walk on the beach which we had done frequently, but this day the sounds of birds overwhelmed me! I had no idea what I had been missing and that they were so loud. Amazing!! My next 2 moments were being in the delivery room when my Grands were born! Babies cry loud when they enter this world! What a sound!! And today they both call their Gammy’s name over and over! My heart continues to be overwhelmed in a very good way!
    7 points
  9. Jared Charney

    WOW moments from this month

    I'm still super new to my CI but my first WOW moment was literally after my audiologist put my Sonnet 2 processor on and I realized that I couldn't hear my tinnitus. Considering how much depression it caused me for nearly four years I am pretty sure it goes way beyond WOW! It's so nice to have something to feel so grateful for each and every day. My 2nd WOW moment came when I realized I could localize sound and especially when I am working this makes me much calmer as my brain doesn't have to frantically scan to "find" where sound comes from and honestly if I can't figure out where the sound is coming from I'm not worried about it. Maybe 2 months after activation my next WOW moment came when streaming to my CI and I realized that I could hear people's accents especially for example someone from the UK, etc. I look forward to a new WOW moment soon!
    6 points
  10. Mary Beth

    Wishing everyone a safe and healthy holiday season

    Please stay safe everyone! Looking forward to our January GoogleMeet chat. Thanks for joining in our 2020 chats! @Jewel @Mary Featherston @Kylie @Dave in Pittsburgh @Joan @Megan L. @phobos512 @Valentin @Tracey_66 @Nischal Koirala @KittKatz @Nikki @Kirk S. @MallaRuth @tmscarlett10 @Marion nancy @Neil
    6 points
  11. Mary Beth

    Helpful tips for new members

    Hello, Many people have recently asked about navigating HearPeers. Here are a few things that I find useful. They may help you as well. Welcome! The bell symbol at the top is notifications. Touch it and a window opens. It will list any notifications you have received and allow you to tap on any of them to be brought right to the message without having to navigate through the forum. There is also a notifications setting icon in that window and by touching it, you will be brought to a window where you can choose when and how to be notified. Scroll down as there are a lot of options. The ACTIVITY link next to BROWSE is also very helpful. Touch ACTIVITY then choose ALL activity to see a list of all activity posted recently and you can click and go directly to any item you wish. After awhile of being on the forum, you can also use the UNREAD option which will then just show you posts that you have not yet read. Clicking on them will bring you directly to the posts. BROWSE option shows you all of our large topics. Clicking on any will open up a list of conversations in that topic. Aural rehab is a popular topic. Assistive Listening Devices is popular as well and where you will find info on the Roger System. SEARCH allows you to type in anything and search for it. You can follow topics or follow people if you like as well. It takes a bit to feel comfortable with this format, but in my opinion it is well worth it. There are many, many helpful people here and lots of terrific information. We also have Med El active here and can ask direct questions and receive info that way. (Check out the Rondo 2 forum to see what I mean.) I hope you find this helpful. @Joan @Karen T @Angie @Samina bugti @Mary Alice London
    6 points
  12. Mary Beth

    Rondo 3 thoughts

    EDITED on 11/18/2020 after learning that Rondo 3 battery life is now being stated as “over 18 hours” instead of “up to 24 hours”. This was disappointing. We also heard that a lot of streaming can reduce Rondo 3 battery life by 20%. I have spent a lot of time lately pondering which processor to choose as my next processor. I have decided on Rondo 3. Thank you to all of the happy Rondo 2 users for your posts. It really made me consider choosing the Rondo family. Many people who are fortunate to have both Sonnet 1 or 2 and Rondo 2 processors have commented about choosing to use Rondo 2 except in noise where the dual mics of Sonnets are helpful. So many people have chosen this same thing. Now that Rondo 3 has dual mics and uses the same adaptive intelligence as Sonnet 2 (ASM3), it should perform just as well in noise as Sonnet 2. There will be no need to switch. At first the lack of an internal telecoil in Rondo 3 gave me pause. But then I saw a picture of the telecoil adapter and learned that our audiologists can set up a telecoil only program. This relieved my concerns about being able to use my beloved Artone neckloop on 100/0 mix ratio. I look forward to trying the AudioLink with Rondo 3 and hope it works well. I am thankful for the increased battery life of Rondo 3 (up to 24 hours). (See EDIT at top) And the ability to charge it while wearing it if needed. And very happy that an indicator light will let me know remaining battery life. I like the new secure attachment brackets. Still not a fan of a small alligator clip for hair attachments but think I can swap that out with a clip. I love the look of Rondo 3. Smile I am thankful that Rondo 3 can use an app as a remote. That’s convenient. I still wish for direct streaming of all phone audio to Rondo 3 and hope that something similar to the Sonnet 1 & 2 AudioStream cover is in the plans for Rondo 3. It could plug into the port just like the telecoil adapter. Thank you Med-El @MED-EL Moderator for all of the cool features of Rondo 3. As soon as ASM 3 is FDA approved, I can not wait to upgrade to Rondo 3 and experience adaptive intelligence. It is really exciting to have all these new tech features available. It makes my CI journey so exciting!
    6 points
  13. Rick H

    First post since activation

    This is my first updated post since being activated on October 29th, I’ve been so busy working I haven’t had a chance until now. A little info about myself my name is Rick Horton, I’m 57 years old & I live in Everett, Washington. I have profound noise induced hearing loss in both ears. My left side was implanted with a Synchrony & the right side I use a hi power HA. I was activated about a week & a half ago using a Rondo2 processor ( waiting for a Sonnet2 as well) . All I can say so far is WOW!! This is the most amazing experience! I was surprised that I was able to understand speech immediately, wasn’t expecting that! Aside from the initial robotic sound of voices I was also amazed at how realistic the voices are! Watching TV ( no more closed captioning) Tom Selleck sounds like Tom Selleck & Julia Roberts sound like Julia Roberts! Wasn’t expecting that either! I’ve already had so many wow moments! I can now talk on FaceTime with my daughter! Never been able to do that! & last Friday I went thru a 3 hour class at work that 6 weeks ago would have been impossible! With the instructor constantly turning his back to us to point out slideshow or talking behind his computer monitor where I couldn’t read his lips, I sat at the back of the class & caught every word he said! Amazing!! & soo many sounds that I haven’t heard in 15 years. The sound of my footsteps, running water, & falling rain. Also the sounds of my granddaughter breathing as she sleeps on my shoulder! That one is priceless! It’s not perfect & I still have a long way to go as far as improvements but I went into this expecting to be disappointed at first & I am completely amazed at how much better I communicate already. My confidence & self esteem are quickly returning & it’s as though my old self is awakening from a long sleep! So thankful for that! I had the first mappings a few days ago & everything is so loud now that it was almost like starting over again but it settled down the next few days fairly quickly. I figure that’s just part of the process! This journey is incredible! Looking so forward to all the coming wow moments!!😁 Rick H
    6 points
  14. GraniPeggy

    Feb/March/April 2019 CI surgery and/or activation

    My implant date was Jan25th..my activation date was Feb6th!! I was hearing immediately on activation! I was SO thrilled! At first voices sounded a little like Donald duck,but during the visit voices became more normal.Im only 2 days out,and there are things to smooth out and to learn about my Sonnet.But I have to say,I'm on cloud 9 !!
    6 points
  15. Jewel

    POLL: Top of your Med-El Wish List

    I wish the fine tuner was actually an app on my phone so I don't have to travel with a fine tuner and a mobile phone! Also the vain part of me would like to see a smaller BTE processor lol!
    6 points
  16. Cara Mia

    Music rediscovery from Mary Beth!

    Hi guys, we have a new pearl of wisdom from Mary Beth! Enjoy! @Mary Beth, thank you! It was a pleasure to read your new blog. https://blog.medel.com/3-steps-to-rediscovering-music-with-a-cochlear-implant/
    6 points
  17. Jewel

    Activation September 20

    Here's a pic of @Jdashielland me immediately following my activation appointment.
    6 points
  18. Mary Beth

    March 2018 implant surgeries

    I thought it would be nice to have a topic for this instead of having it attached to other threads. It will be an exciting month in HPs. @Dave on March 22 @Jdashiell on March 13 @Kara of Canada on March ? Wishing you all the very best! I just realized that all three of you are getting your second side done. (Or re-done)
    6 points
  19. Nikki

    favorite WOW moments

    Wow moment: Life is real good! This is a huge wow moment when you realize you feel whole again. For those who followed my journey know it started far from ideal. No speech discrimination, a true daily struggle. Now, 3.5 months post activation (Of re- implantation! THANK YOU Dr. Pillsbury at UNC), I'm amazed at how great this implant work. Better than in my wildest dreams! Turned my life around completely. I'm able to travel again around the world, not worrying about not managing situations. Traveling has been great because it kept my senses alert, truly intensified my hearing experience. Recent wow moments: Talking to at least one stranger a day, without worry Hearing and understanding speech and music and everyting else without meaning to or even directing to it Calling the property manager on the phone and getting what is said Yesterday at my parents house, answering the phone at my own free will and taking a recorded message and also following instructions for confirming appointment, all sounds crystal clear Driving and listening to radio station. Great music! And I recognize songs in both languages! I understand lyrics of songs I've never heard before even tho the radio reception is crappy! Understanding right away which language is on although they go back and forth quite a bit! Hearing a conversation upstairs, and clearly. Everyting they said plus details such as numbers mentioned (Of course I verified I heard the number right !) Birds Couple of weeks ago, standing in the back yard and hearing a man (neighbour) talk on the other side of the fence. It was man voice and I could understand everything he said without even seeing who it was My nephew's little voice and I can get it all! I hope I get to add more to this thread.
    6 points
  20. Janet C

    CI Surgery under Local Anaesthetic

    Just to let you know that I had my implant operation last week under local anaesthetic. Yes it was a bit scary, but was handled brilliantly by the surgeon and his team. It took an hour and a half and I was kept informed all the way through with cards held up telling me what was happening at each stage. I was warned I would go dizzy at one stage but that this would be momentary, and it was. I just had to keep still and was concentrating all the time on how it would all be worth it in the end. I am so grateful for this opportunity, given that I was refused the operation initially. Am now 6 days post op and beginning to feel more like my self. Activation 2nd May.
    6 points
  21. Noelle

    Hi!

    I’m new to hear peers! I’m not new to the world of implants, just never knew this site existed. Anyhow, I have a cochlear implant, it was done nearly 7 years ago after suffering in silence for nearly 25 years. My experience gave me my life and career back! I’m 51 year old mother of three from Ontario who works as a Broadcast Journalist.
    5 points
  22. Justin

    AudioStream - 1 week using it, big thumbs up!

    Top line review: this is the accessory I've been waiting for! Super easy streaming that I always have with me. Sounds perfect! I'm streaming with it for several hours a day, whereas I rarely hook up my cable and gave up on the Roger Pen long ago. I still have some things on my wishlist, but this knocks out most of them. Not sure the price, but if it's inline with some of their other accessories and I had to pay for it, I'd definitely spend the money. Pros: Streaming that you always have with you, no other accessories needed. No. Wires. Streams from all apps on the iPhone/iPad. Connection is generally rock solid, range is good - still works 30 feet/10 meters away from my phone with a wall in between Audio quality is very good, on par with Direct Audio Cord, much better than AudioLink or Roger! Audio level goes as high as DAC streaming. Not that big, same size or slightly smaller than DAC cover or Roger cover. Will keep it on all the time. Battery life seems about the same (my routine is off working from home "these days", so I can't say for sure) Can actually stream at the same time as the AudioLink! (Yes two simultaneous streams!) So I use the AudioLink to stream from my computer (audio cable from computer to AudioLink, not Bluetooth) Cons/could be better: Doesn't stream from my Mac. Doesn't use Sonnet (1 or 2) mics for phone calls, uses the phone's mics. Sometimes needs to be power cycled to reconnect to phone if they've been "apart" for a bit. Quickly reconnects though. My Sonnet mics are still on while streaming, audiologist couldn't find option to turn them off while streaming, and I don't see a software option. Would be nice if iPhone's quick access Hearing Device controls in Control Center could change Sonnet settings and presets. Still need to use AudioKey 2 app or remote. Narrative: I was lucky enough to time a processor upgrade to pretty much the exact day AudioStream became available. I think MedEl actually slowed things down so that the timing would be right! It arrived Tuesday last week along with all my other new gear - the whole box was the size of a microwave! The AudioStream itself was in one of the small accessory boxes, like a battery cover or mic cover. It included the AudioStream itself and a new battery frame for disposables. The battery frame is marked with a tiny "fan"/wifi icon and it is imperceptibly shorter than the old frame. I tried sliding the AudioStream over my old battery on my (old) Sonnet, and it almost fit, but there's still a >1mm gap. I use rechargeables, so I had to open the new set of rechargables that came with my upgrade and grab the new RCB frame (also marked with a fan/wifi symbol) - I swear, it's impossible to tell the difference to the old one. So note: if you use rechargables and get the AudioStream, beg and plead for a new rechargable battery frame, or suck it up and buy one. Once I got the batteries sorted out, I got started setting up on my old Sonnet. So... my situation with my iPhone is... unique... let's leave it at that. I'm 99% sure you won't run into the issues I had. (Oh! I have no idea how any of this works on Android! )Once I retried on my iPad (and later back on my iPhone with things cleaned up), I got the proper experience. I installed the AudioKey 2 app, launched it, signed in with my MedEl account (account registration requires a processor serial # to verify you are a recipient). Allow Bluetooth (obviously) and Location Services (for "Find My Processor") when prompted. Once you're in, you can then bypass everything else and click the 🍔"hamburger"/menu button in the upper left, and choose "Connectivity Options". Click "AudioStream" > "Configuration" > Pick Left or Right, then Next. Slide the AudioStream onto the processor to power up, hold close to the iPhone/iPad, and click Next. Patiently wait, you may have to retry the power up, scan step (I did). You'll be prompted for a name – in iPhone settings this becomes "<name>'s hearing device", so just give it a short simple name (I think it's max 8 characters). Now wait again... this part also timed out on me on some of my reconfiguration attempts. You'll be prompted for a "pairing request", click Accept! It'll say "success". At this point, you *should* be ready to go. Back on the "Configure/Update/Reset" page, don't bother with "Update" at this time, I assume the v1.0 firmware is up-to-date. OK, time to stream... I had some music queued up, so I swiped down to get Control Center, and noticed my volume control had an Ear icon in it. When I pressed play, there was a delay, and the Ear icon went back to a Speaker icon, and the playback was paused. On my iPad, I pressed play again, and it hesitated, the Ear icon came back, I heard a faint "thunk" from my processor, and the streaming began! So from first setup, it may take a few seconds for the system to get everything setup to stream. Be patient. On my finicky iPhone, it wouldn't work straight away. Maybe I wasn't patient enough. I had to go to "Settings" > "Accessibility" > "Hearing Devices" and wait while it briefly scanned for devices. "Justin's Hearing Dev." appeared, cycled through a few different statuses and finally was "Connected". Tapping on "Justin's Hearing Dev." gives me a page with an option to "Stream to right hearing device" which should be on by default. At this point, streaming/listening to audio worked! In regular use it mostly "just works". If I haven't been streaming for a while, it usually starts streaming again without issue. But sometimes the audio won't start - seems this happens when the AudioStream and phone lose connection for a bit due to turning off Bluetooth or physical separation. It'll think it's connected, but it's not. Powercycling the AudioStream solves the problem, but a handful of times I need to powercycle twice. Reconnection can be immediate, or sometimes it takes a few seconds. What do I use it for? I'm streaming podcasts and web radio stations to it while I work and do chores. I used to want to do this, but hated setting up and tangling with the DAC cord, now it's just a few taps on my phone. I use it to watch YouTube videos (usually don't need captions) without bothering my wife and searching for headphones. I'll probably listen to more spoken content this way than any other moving forward - it's so convenient and I get rehab at the same time! I listen to music (mostly for the rehab benefit). I've tried some Zoom/WebEx calls, works great but my good ear is much better suited for that. I'm SSD, and phone calls are infinitely easier and less annoying to the other person if I use my good ear. But I have tried a few calls and it seems to work well. Just have to remember to keep the phone close because it's using the phone's mics. On one call, I tried to switch audio to NOT use the AudioStream, but it kept toggling back to the AudioStream. I think this is an iPhone bug not AudioStream. Another cool iPhone feature is "Live Listen" (I'll explain in another post how to set it up). This feature streams the iPhone's microphones to the AudioStream, and can be quickly accessed from Control Center. The audio pickup streamed this way is amazing! It can really amplify sounds, and background noise is greatly suppressed. It's like having a zoom lens for sound. It blows away the quality of audio from the AudioLink remote mic... by a lot! There is a slight delay however, and since the Sonnet mics are still active, it's a bit like an echo. Perhaps it'd be best to turn the mic sensitivity all the way down if you want to use this feature. Or hopefully MedEl can give us a way to control the audio/mic mix from the AudioKey 2 app. I won't use this feature a lot, since I have one good ear, but maybe I will find a use for it - it's fun and impressive to play with though! Anything else?! Physically, it's a little big, but I don't notice at all. I have a large head with proportional ears, so it's still hiding behind my ear lobe. I don't have to look at it! For the benefit it gives, I'll trade-off anyone else's opinion of how it looks. It doesn't add perceptibly to the weight of my processor. I'll be wearing it 99% of the time vs regular battery cover. Alright, I've said a lot (way too much). Let's conclude: It's awesome, I love it, you should totally get one! I don't know what it costs since I got it as the connectivity option on my upgrade. But if I were to pay out of pocket, say it was in the ballpark of $500 - I would absolutely spend that to have this. That might be a good chunk of money, but I've been waiting and dreaming of having something like this since before I got my implant!
    5 points
  23. I LOVE the AudioStream! Thank you to the Med-El engineers who designed AudioStream! @MED-EL Moderator Terrific audio quality and music sounds amazing! Phone calls take precedence and then we return automatically to whatever we were streaming. There are audible “thunk” sounds when it connects and switches. This is a fabulous connectivity device for Sonnet/Sonnet 2. I am using Power One implant disposable batteries. The slightly longer battery cover does not bother me.
    5 points
  24. Mary Beth

    favorite WOW moments

    This will most definitely be my favorite topic to follow! I just LOVE WOW moments. I can’t wait to read everyone’s WOW moments. Here are some of my favorite WOW moments with my CIs. -I heard my grand nephew hiccup on FaceTime when he was only one month old. -I identified songs playing on the radio while driving to work. My private Name That Tune game. Smile. -I conversed with family members from different rooms in the house and even from upstairs to the living room. -I heard the waves in the ocean while boogie boarding. -A flock of geese flew overhead and I heard individual geese honks! Crazy wild! -Hearing my cats purr. -Playing the piano again after decades of being unable to do so. -Hearing my family whisper, actually whisper, into my processors. So many WOW moments. Life changing.
    5 points
  25. Wow it's hard to know where to start... it's really changed my life and I can't believe you can't always get CI for SSD everywhere in the world because one ear is 'enough'. It's really not, if there is a choice of having 2. I can locate sound and orient to it. Useful for safety like crossing roads, and people calling me, and my kids creeping up from behind, and playing hide and seek, and being able to track objects that aren't in my vision. My sound booth testing for sound orientation went from 0 to perfect in 6 months and I really notice it in daily life. I can hear and understand things behind me, like conversation, quiet noises and music. My favourite use for this is when I'm driving - I can now hear my kids talking to me and hold a conversation, but when SSD I could not at all understand what they were saying - too quiet and distorted and no facial expression/lips to help. Now we can chat and sing like before! I can sit anywhere, instead of manipulating the room to sit people on my good hearing side. And my friends and family and colleagues can sit anywhere too, instead of having to ask me 'is this the right side? can you hear me here?' Also I can sit further away - instead of having to sit at the front row of every meeting and concert. I can hear in noisy environments, that I was otherwise avoiding. I struggled at restaurants, weddings, funerals, parties, pubs, quiz nights - pretty much tried not to go out because I could hear soft babble but not understand it. I started to feel very isolated and disengaged from group settings, either not attending or sitting quietly out of the way. Now I can go anywhere and hear (nearly) anything over the din. I can sing! I mean, I could still sing but I couldn't be sure what I was singing - not sure about volume and tone especially. Pitch was OK interestingly. As I sing in a small choir, the whole package is very important. I spent the time pre-CI constantly checking with my singing buddies how I sounded - am I too loud? can you hear me? did I get that expression right? Now I can tell for myself. However this remains the hardest aspect of my hearing - I do still struggle a bit to hear myself clearly (my voice sounds different to before) and my buddies on my CI side sound different to my 'normal' side. But I'm still getting used to that and hoping it continues to improve. I can talk to people at a pleasant volume. Everyone tells me I tended to talk too loudly pre-CI, but I only found out after my activation - they were all too polite to mention it before that! I am happier. Just all the time. I guess a cumulative effect of all the above! My husband says even when I was newly activated and frustrated, I was still happier than pre-CI. I am looking forward to others' responses too! This is a great idea @Mary Beth, it would have been very useful to me pre-CI too to get such targeted feedback. I did find bits and pieces throughout the forum though.
    5 points
  26. Joan

    February 25, 2021 International Cochlear Implant Day

    Happy International Cochlear Implant Day!! I am so very grateful to Med-El for enhancing my life in ways I never dreamed possible, for making it possible for me to hear so much better in my 70s than I ever did even as a preschooler. I was born hearing but with some hearing loss. The loss was progressive. I finally began wearing hearing aids in my late teens (stubbornly refusing to do so until then) and by my late 30s could not hear at all without them. Over the next 30+ years, my hearing aids needed more and more power; however, my ability to understand what I was hearing continued to significantly decline. Ultimately, this was the cause of my early retirement at age 60. The stress of struggling to understand all that was necessary to perform my duties was just too overwhelming and utterly exhausting. In retrospect, I wish it had not taken me another 12 years to decide to be evaluated for a cochlear implant. But, in fact, it did. At age 72 I received my first implant and, six months later, my second. I had bilateral hearing and it was awesome! What an incredible new lease on life I received with those implants! One of my greatest joys is the second chance I received as a grandparent. Two of my grandchildren were already teenagers by the time I was implanted, and I had struggled mightily to converse with them as they grew up. Then, as luck would have it, I was blessed with an infant grandchild who celebrated her first birthday one week before my first implant. She and I have conversed nonstop since she said her first words! Not a day goes by that I don’t appreciate the gift of exceptional hearing I have received from Med-El. I am forever grateful to my family for all their loving support of me, both during my many, many years of struggling to hear and understand, and, more recently, during my incredible hearing journey. My thanks to Med-El and my clinic for providing this unbelievable journey is beyond measure!
    5 points
  27. Mary Beth

    February 25, 2021 International Cochlear Implant Day

    As we celebrate International Cochlear Implant Day, I find myself thinking back over my hearing journey. It has been a wild ride. I heard fine from birth until age 13. Then I started with a progressive bilateral conductive hearing loss, which made everything sound quieter and quieter. Next came a progressive mixed hearing loss, which had both a conductive loss making everything quieter and a sensorineural loss making everything distorted due to missing sounds. After that came a series of failed ear surgeries trying to repair the conductive component in my right ear which ultimately led to the complete loss of hearing in my right ear. So I spent the following 24 years hearing only with my left ear using stronger and stronger hearing aids as my loss progressed. Until no hearing aid could help me hear well. My life had become reliant on speech reading and having one on one conversations. I was so tired by the end of every day. I missed so much of what was said. It was frustrating. That was when I explored getting a cochlear implant in my right ear, which I had been calling my dead ear for decades. And my life changed. Initial static and beeps turned into real words and everyday I heard more and more. I loved training my brain to interpret the sounds delivered by my cochlear implant. I woke up every morning excited to put my processor on and experience new WOW moments. The CI journey was life changing. Eight months later we implanted my left ear and hearing with two balanced ears is terrific! A lot of people helped me on my CI journey and I am thankful for everyone’s support and encouragement. A special thank you to: my two CI surgeons; my amazing audiologist who has guided my journey with such dedication, skill and care; Med-El who made my cochlear implants, introduced me to so many wonderful people and gave me an incredible experience in Innsbruck; and all of the people I have met online and in person who share their CI journeys so openly. My deepest thanks go to Jill who has made my CI journey, as well as my life, the greatest gift of all. Happy International CI Day to all! Thank you @MED-EL Moderator
    5 points
  28. Mary Featherston

    What did things sound like on activation day for you?

    This is an excellent description of what I heard after my first activation. I called them "the beepies" but it was also somewhat reminiscent of Minnie Mouse. I was glad when that went away! And it will, it's part of learning to hear when the input goes to your brain via electronics instead of an eardrum and a cochlea. My second activation wasn't quite as beepy but it wasn't normal voices either. It all works out in the end!
    5 points
  29. Richard G

    Rondo 3 user experiences with telecoil adapter and neckloop

    The best Christmas present of all times -- Rondo 3 was just delivered by FEDEX and I am unpacking it. Next week I have scheduled an appointment with audiologist, but for now, just looking at it and putting it altogether (#4 magnet) thrills me to no end. Finally no more batteries, stereo sound and double microphones. I will share with you my experiences as soon as I have the processor programmed. I must really tell you how great, helpful, courteous and efficient was the Medel staff. Thanks to all.
    5 points
  30. Kylie

    Newly activated CI for SSD Question

    Within 6 months I could close my eyes and not miss too much, if I concentrated very hard, though it sounded very tinny and electronic. Now at 18 months it sounds way better, more like voices than robots, but still definitely an electronic sound overall. Don't need captions now, can listen to any audiobook etc.
    5 points
  31. Nischal Koirala

    November HearPeers Virtual Coffee Chat

    Well I lost my hearing back in May 2019. It was due to the mumps which was sudden and very painful, I got high fever and ran to the hospital. The day I went to the hospital, I only had fever but no symptoms of hearing loss but the following day I found out I was hearing significantly less than the day before. I told that to my family and they said it may be temporary and you will be fine in a day or two but the other day my hearing was zero in my both ears. It was such a sudden thing. Then we visited sooooo many clinics,hospitas, doctors but there was no sign of getting my hearing back! Then after 3-4 months of research, we found out hearing aid. I wore the hearing aid for 2-3 months . After 6 months we finally found the thing called Cochlear Implant which was totally a new thing for us. I had no knowledge about it . There were no distributors inside the country,we had to bring it from foreign which took 2-3 weeks. After the implant arrived, we did the surgery immediately. (Implants: Synchronory Flex 28) After that my recovery took again 2-3 weeks. Then it was finally the time to get activated and get my hearing back! I am only implaned in one side but also 'better than nothing' 🙂. And also I use the Rondo 2 processor which I chose because of it's bulit in rechargable battery and it's physical body . It is very good in terms of it's body,it is very lightweight and comfortable and also good in terms of sound but found out from you guys that other processors sound better than this but no worries Since then the journey has been magical!! Very happy sharing with you!😁 (Sorry for the late reply. Was busy with my exam!)
    5 points
  32. Mary Beth

    November HearPeers Virtual Coffee Chat

    Excellent November HP chat today! 10 members participated, including 3 first time chat participants! Great seeing you all @Dave in Pittsburgh @Tracey_66 @Kylie @Nischal Koirala so nice to meet you! @Joan @Nikki @tmscarlett10 so nice to meet you and we look forward to your activation in a couple of weeks! @Megan L. Keep us posted on your second surgery plan! @MallaRuth thank you for joining in! We had participants from Spain, Nepal, Australia, UK and US. Topics focused on connectivity options (music link silhouettes and Artone). Experience as single sided CI with an acoustic ear. Long term CI experience. Experience with reimplantation and the brain’s ability to improve what was a non-dominant ear. Improved speech in noise. Apps and activities post activation. Wow we covered a lot! Great chat everyone. Stay safe. Next chat will be in January.
    5 points
  33. Kirk S.

    November HearPeers Virtual Coffee Chat

    Hi Everybody. Can’t quite see Mt. Fuji in this photo from Saturday, but it’s there in the distance. Nice sunset nonetheless, I think. Will send another once the peak is covered in snow. A classic. Cheers!
    5 points
  34. JessDunn

    Jess from Australia - Mum of Child with bilateral cochlears

    Hi, I'm Jess and live in Perth Western Australia. I have a daughter who was implanted at the age of 11months with bilateral implants. We have used the OPUS 2, Rondo and now the sonnets which are our processor of choice. My daughter is now 7 and has very fluent clear speech. We still have all the usual issues in day to day life, missing processors, broken parts but in general extremely grateful and blessed to have such a wonderful product. Thanks Jess
    5 points
  35. Mine is simply the fact I can talk to people again. I was always an outgoing guy and didn’t let my hearing loss stop me while with close friends despite messing up big time occasionally but I was really withdrawing otherwise. Now I can go into a coffee shop and chat with anyone. Getting my life back! (And some new friends)😀
    5 points
  36. Mary Featherston

    favorite WOW moments

    Today it was warm (for January in Minnesota, 40F) and I went to the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum for a walk. It was a bit windy, and when I was walking near oaks with dry, brown leaves still on the tree, I could hear them rustling in the wind. I'm not sure I've ever heard that before. Lots of birds singing today too! It was a great walk.
    5 points
  37. Jdashiell

    Playing musical instruments with our CIs ?

    My father-in-law played clarinet prior to WWII. He is 93 now and started playing again at 50. He is an attorney ( Tax) and plays so very well. He got me started in the Jazz camp we go to every July. Amazing! my point is start again. Choose an instrument- it something you can due throughout your life and a great way to listen, improvising your audio skills and memory and brain training.
    5 points
  38. sassychele02

    favorite WOW moments

    Hi @Mary Beth hello everyone! I'm catching up on posting and reading the forums. I enjoy them so much and live this community. I have 2 wow moments since activation I would love to share. 1. My mom cane to visit a week ago. She was not only in another room completely out of sight but also behind d a closed door. I heard her clearly ask my aunt to tell me she wanted to go to the store. My aunt sat wide mouth as I said dis she just say to tell me she wants to go to the store. Lol. WOW number 2. I was interviewed for a local podcasting on inspiring women. My session was about my cochlear journey and how it has changed my and my family dynamics of communicating.
    5 points
  39. Daniel the Stranger

    November and December 2018 dates

    Hi @Mary Beth just came back from the Audi, I'm back at work now. this activation was much shorter than the first one and so far everything looks good. It sounds weird at the moment having too much noise. Voices and sounds are high pitch like helium voices but in between I could recognise different voices from the start. I'm planing to use both processors everyday and leave the new one only after my job finishes at 4 pm. I'll keep you posted. Edit: tomorrow is already today here!!!
    5 points
  40. Joan

    November and December 2018 dates

    @Mary Beth definitely some exciting times ahead for all! @Margo @Esteban @Daniel the Stranger @Nikki @Mary Featherston @Marion nancy I wish all of you the very best and a terrific week!
    5 points
  41. Mary Beth

    First ever Med-El Meetup in Innsbruck, Austria

    Day 3 - We began today with group photos outside Med-El headquarters near the Med-El sign. Then we focused on digital media all morning. Breakout groups focused on topics such as: -What digital media helped us at the beginning of our journeys? -What digital media may help others? -Med-El’s multiple digital media platforms, including a new Instagram presence! -Some of us participated in filmed interviews of each other in pairs. And then it happened. You could’ve heard a pin drop as everyone realized Inge Hochmair stopped by to visit with us. We were so in awe. Inge Hochmair, the creator of the modern cochlear implant and founder of Med-El, was standing right there! I met Inge and tried to express my deepest gratitude for her life’s work which has changed my life. I thought I would have this incredible experience for a minute or two since there were 15 of us. But after I finished trying to put into words how much my life has changed and how grateful I am, she asked me questions about my hearing journey. She was interested and took time to hear my experience. I could not believe I was standing there talking with Inge Hochmair! There are no words to describe my feelings. A dream come true. Everyone of us took turns doing the same. None of us could believe this was happening. And then Erwin Hochmair joined! We owe so much to the Hochmairs. Thank you for Med-El and for changing our lives! I had passed along thank you cards to be given to the Med-El employees who made each of my specific internal components on Day 2. Our serial numbers are able to identify the exact people who made them. It turned out that 3 of the team of people who made my right Concerto implant were there and they came down to meet me. Barbara from Med-El’s social media team translated for us. My eyes filled with tears as soon as I saw them. We talked for quite awhile. I told them how much I appreciate how carefully they made my implant and how their work took my ear which had not processed any sound for 24 years and turned it into an incredible listening ear. Thanks to Barbara’s translating not only was I able to share some of my right ear’s WOW moments but they were also able to ask me things they were curious about. Teary moments and laughter ......and another chance to say thank you so much for this gift of hearing! Ideas of ways to help people on their journeys were developing as we continued to learn from each other. We could feel the excitement at Med-El. More and more Med-El employees were coming down and discussing these ideas during coffee breaks. (Which is quite funny that those times were called coffee breaks because I was so excited to be meeting and talking with Med-El employees from all different departments that I never actually had any coffee!) We enjoyed lunch together with Med-El employees and then our time at Med-El headquarters was ending. I wasn’t ready to say goodbye to all the wonderful Med-El employees. Smile. This first ever Med-El Meetup created a blended group of Med-El users and Med-El employees who are all highly motivated to work together to help others on their hearing journeys. It really is a beginning and I am excited. The afternoon was spent at Med-El’s interactive museum about hearing called AUDIOVERSUM. We screamed and then screamed in pairs to try to match the decibel level of an elephant. We tried our best but the elephant won. We saw a huge 3-D ear transmit sound. We chased birds using bilateral hearing, ran into walls in virtual reality 3-D sound mazes and played music with huge interactive cochlear hairs. Later we rode the cable car up Nordkette Mountain overlooking the beautiful town of Innsbruck and enjoyed dinner high up in the Austrian Alps. Saying goodbye to everyone was difficult. Our group bonded so easily that we are already special friends. I hope our paths cross in person again someday. We will stay connected via social media. We shared an amazing experience with Med-El. I see future travel plans to far off countries where we now have friends to visit. Smile. Med-El’s first ever Med-El Meetup was a huge success! Thank you Med-El for inviting me to participate in this incredible experience!
    5 points
  42. Mary Beth

    Bilateral Bliss

    Here is my bilateral WOW moment of the day. I would love to hear yours too! After decades of never knowing where sounds were coming from, it amazes me that my brain now hears in 3-D. This afternoon in high school English class I was seated next to a student in the second row. The teacher wanders around the room sometimes as she teaches. Today she was reading aloud as she wandered around the room. I kept looking straight ahead. I didn’t need to look at the text because I understood her fine. While I was listening, I realized that I was picturing her in the room as she moved. I knew exactly where she was at all times just by the way her voice sounded in each ear. Hearing in 3-D is so awesome! I love my CIs!
    5 points
  43. Daniel the Stranger

    August, September & October 2018 activation dates

    Well guys, I had the appointment with my surgeon today and confirmed the date of my second surgery for the 10 of October, about 5 months later from the first one.
    5 points
  44. Nikki

    favorite WOW moments

    One of my favorites! Feels absolutely liberating. And it is!
    5 points
  45. Kara of Canada

    March 2018 implant surgeries

    I’m doing al right. Rough night. I could t get comfortable now the bandage is off I feel much more comfortable and have been able to sleep. So that’s what I’ve been doing all day off and on.
    5 points
  46. Nikki

    March 2018 implant surgeries

    Hi I was hoping the same thing @Mary Beth So I'm glad it was with no complications, the surgeon was pleased and @Kara of Canadais happy I've got a picture to prove it With her permission I'm posting it here so we can all share the joy Congratulation Kara, on becoming bilateral!
    5 points
  47. Nikki

    March 2018 implant surgeries

    Kara is out of surgery and on her way home Speedy recovery our dear friend!
    5 points
  48. MED-EL Moderator

    Differences in Cochlear Implants

    Hi stream2525, Everyone is offering very good information. We can’t directly give medical advice here, but it’s good that you’re doing all the research you can. Every person’s needs are different, so you should discuss your goals with your clinical team. Cara Mia has pointed out that many studies show longer flexible arrays can also allow a degree of preserved hearing. What’s generally most important is surgeon’s techniques and using a flexible array, like all MED-EL FLEX arrays. Hicksy also makes a good point. There’s always a risk of losing residual hearing, but long arrays can help provide better hearing performance. If you lose residual hearing, a long array can help cover more of your cochlea for better, more natural sound quality. Hope that helps ! Kind regards, Leigh HearPeers Support Team
    5 points
  49. Hicksy

    Differences in Cochlear Implants

    Just to throw this out there, I was approved for a Sonnet EAS and was implanted with the synchrony flex soft which is longer than the 28. Unfortunately I didn’t retain my residual hearing ( pretty much my greatest fear, if any, going into surgery) and I can truthfully say it upset me for 15 seconds when I found out I had lost the residual hearing. What I gained is almost indescribable to what I lost that I actually feel I wasted those 15 seconds lamenting...? (truthfully my fears going into surgery was it would be another failed hearing aid experiment that would do nothing to regain any word recognition along with losing the residual hearing but I was to the point where the gamble made sense). So woe is me. I lost my residual hearing, I’m 10 months along, can’t talk on the telephone yet, still need cc on the tv, music still sounds weird, oh woe is me... nothing could be further from the truth... even the first day in the booth when I realized I had lost the residual hearing and it was early days with the “casino in my head” effect still going on I realized I was light years ahead of where I started. I’ve gone from zero word recognition on tv, radio, phone (for years) to about i’d say 70-80%, music sounds better than ever (I was missing soooo much) and even better, every time I think I’ve reached the plateau, something happens to prove I’m still improving. But that’s the nitty gritty small stuff. So still can’t talk on the phone, can’t watch tv without cc... Overall, it’s simply life changing. I talk to people in lineups, actually heard far better than my spouse in a noisy restaurant the other night, talk all night with my friends without asking them to repeat themselves once! Simply life changing.
    5 points
  50. Mary Beth

    any aproximation as to the sound of a cochlear implant

    I will do my best to explain how things sound to me with my bilateral CIs. I do not have any residual hearing so EVERYTHING I hear is coming from my CIs only. Please remember that this is NOT how things sounded to me at the beginning of my CI journey. The first few months are full of adjusting to the CI input and our brains figuring it all out as we settle into our favorite map. Everyone has their own voice. I can recognize people I know just by hearing their voices. I can recognize singers voices as well in songs. I notice people's accents. I can tell when someone is playing with their voice (being funny or disguising their voice). I can tell when someone has a sore throat which has altered their voice. I hear the child voice qualities in young children. I can pick up the phone without looking at caller ID and recognize familiar voices right away. This is what I mean when I say things sound natural to me with my CI. There is no robotic, computerized, flat sound to the voices I hear. They are amazing! Again, since this is very important to keep in mind, things did NOT sound like this to me at first. In fact, I did not understand any speech at activation for either side. At some point in my journey, musical instrument voices emerged. I was sent a musical clip to listen to from a friend. I had never heard of the group before. I listened and enjoyed their sound. I thought the saxophone was a tenor sax instead of an alto sax (I had played alto sax growing up) so I looked online for information about this group and it was a tenor sax! I was so excited that the musical instrument voices were becoming so clear. Smile. Just two months ago I was at a restaurant with friends. It had a bar with live music in the section next to where we were eating. We could not see into that area but could hear the live music. My friend commented on the clarinet. I was baffled because it did not sound like a clarinet to me. It sounded like a muted trumpet. On our way out, I peeked into the bar area and it was a muted trumpet. It's so exciting! We were on vacation and my friend was speaking to someone there we had just met. Afterwards I commented on that person's strong midwestern accent and wondered if she was from Michigan. My hearing friend said her accent sounded British. Later that week we ran into this woman again and guess what? She is from Wisconsin so midwestern accent was correct. This stuff continues to blow my mind. I am sharing my experiences with you so that you can see that for some of us, CIs sound very natural indeed. It really is all up to neural survival that delivers good info to our brains and then what our brains do with this info. We can not do anything about the neural survival but we can help our brains by activiely training on aural rehab and giving our brains time to figure things out, I have been implanted for just over two years and I still train everyday. The types of training activities I do have changed over time. Right now I am training musical pitch perception. I have returned to playing the piano and have been taking weekly lessons for the past 4 months. It is so much fun and things continue to improve. Some people have asked me when I will stop training. My response is always the same. I will stop training when I see that training is not improving my listening skills. So far that has not happened. Smile. I hope it doesn't happen for a long long time as I plan on getting the best listening possible out of my CIs. They have changed my life in so many ways. Since I have shared some of my WOW moments with you I think it is important for me to tell you that there were frustrating experiences along my journey too. This is not a simple fix. Everyone's journey will have WOW moments and frustrations. I wish you the best.
    5 points
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