I am new to the group and would like to introduce myself. My name is Don Doherty and I am 73 years young. I lost some of my hearing while serving as an automatic rifleman in the Marine Corps during my tour in Vietnam (66-67). It got bad enough that I was medically evacuated from Puerto Rico in 1970 where I was then stationed, to Philadelphia Naval Hospital which was the Hearing Center at the time. I was tested and diagnosed with bilateral neurosensory high frequency hearing loss and had a hearing aid ordered. While waiting for the aid to come in I was fortunate to undergo an aural rehabilitation program which the military had in those days. When my in-the-ear aid came in (June 1970) I learned I was being recommended for discharge. I appealed this Physical Evaluation Board (PEB) finding and was allowed to finish my Marine Corps career provided I change my military occupational speciality and limit my exposure to loud noise. I had many challenges being a Marine with a hearing aid but finally retired in 1987. When I was released from the Marine Corps I went to the Veterans Administration where I was issued a much needed second hearing aid. I then worked for the Veterans Administration for the next 25 years. All totaled I had worn hearing aids for about 45 years. As my hearing grew progressively worse, my audiologist told me my hearing aids were no longer helping me. I then began to consider getting a Cochlear Implant. It took me doing some study and research before I finally made the commitment to proceed. The approval process came from the Veterans Administration as my hearing loss was considered service connected and they were going to pay for it. I chose Med-El because I wanted the latest technology, the ability to have an MRI, and an implant that could get as close to the hearing nerve as possible. I also attended two Med-El Mingles where I liked the staff especially Taylor Sands who was very helpful and answered many of my questions. My decision to get a cochlear implant was reinforced by these Med-El activities and contacts.
On September 5th I received a Synchrony 2 Cochlear Implant from the esteemed Dr Stephanie Antonio-Moody at Norfolk-Sentara General Hospital in Norfolk, VA. I can’t believe it’s been only six days ago. I have met my Cochlear Implant audiologist, Dr Anna Louthan, and will be getting the Sonnet 2 and Rondo 2 audio processors. My activation date is September 24th, just 13 days away, and I am anxious to begin my new life’s journey.
I thank everyone in advance for your support.