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georgewes

a question on which ear to have the CI

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I have some hearing in my left ear and my right ear is now deaf.   So logically I will want to have a CI in my deaf ear and not the ear with some hearing which allows me to get by from day to day.   Right?   Or am I missing something.   I was told by a person that consulted me about the implant that I would do better to have it done in the ear with the hearing.   But wouldn't they have the same result from the CI whether or not it was in an ear with some hearing?   I told the consultant that there is no way I would have it done in my ear that has some hearing.   Never!

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Hi George,

 

I was in that exact situation too.  Both ears qualified for CIs.  Right ear had heard nothing for 24 years.  Left ear had my only bit of remaining hearing and was using a power aid.  All indications were that the left ear would be a better CI ear due to its constant processing of sound via hearing aids.  Right ear was not deemed to be a good candidate and I was cautioned that the right ear may never understand speech by listening only.  I was not willing to lose the only remaining hearing I had in my left ear at the time so chose to get the right side implanted first.  With lots of aural rehab, my right side did amazing!  It can understand speech just fine by listening alone.  Eight months later we implanted my left ear.  That side responded faster to the CI input and required less aural rehab.  Together they are amazing.

 

This worked for me but I was fortunate that my right side surprised everyone and performs much better than indicators suggested.  I am also fortunate because I was eligible for bilateral CIs.  If someone is only eligible for one CI, this would've been much riskier.

 

Wishing you the best.

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Hi George. I actually had my "good ear" implanted first. It was supposed to be a better candidate and there was not supposed to be any malformations or scar tissues there. But that was wrong! Lol it is working great and I have no regrets! I hope to be bilateral in the near future!! Best of luck!! 

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Hi George,

I know the fear you have of getting your "good" ear implanted. When I was in your spot, I wanted to hold on to whatever hearing I could just in case the implant didn't work out. My left ear had ZERO word discrimination so I literally had nothing to lose. So that was the ear they did first. Fortunately, after 21 years of not understanding words and sounds, the implant worked beautifully! I can now understand people much better, talk on the phone with ease, and watch non-captioned videos/tv. However, it wasn't without a ton of aural rehab. Aural rehab will be your best friend after activation. Best wishes and good luck!!

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Well, there are different techniques of choosing the side.

Of course, if there is some natural hearing - an implantee would like to keep it as long as it is possible. But, in the equation we take more factor in the process of choosing, for instance how long the ear has been deaf, what is the cause of deafness, is there any anomaly in the particular cochlea.... etc.

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