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Bilateral Implantation Is Cochlear Implantation In Both Ears.

1976 words - 8 pages

Depending on which part of the ear is damaged (outer, middle, or inner), hearing specialists are able to classify the type of loss and the necessary means for correction. Depending on the amount of loss in a sensorineural hearing loss, caused by a problem in the cochlea or in the auditory nervous system, a cochlear implant can be very beneficial. Within the normal-hearing population, binaural hearing (hearing with two ears) is generally superior to monaural hearing (hearing with one ear) (Litovsky, 2008). Benefits regarding speech, language, sound, developmental, and social factors, coincide with implantation of bilateral cochlear implants, rather than unilateral implantation, for those with severe-profound hearing loss.
Bilateral implantation is cochlear implantation in both ears. Hearing with two ears has distinct advantages. Bilateral implantation presents an ideal option regarding auditory information that is simply not available when a single ear is stimulated (Litovsky, 2008). Bilateral cochlear implantation does not restore hearing to its normal function. However, one important aspect that unilateral implantation leaves unaddressed is: people with normal hearing rely on sound input from two ears. The brain is built to process and analyze sound from two ears in order to maximize our full ability to use the auditory information we receive. The information received from both ears combines in the brain in such a way that makes it easy for the listener to cope with various listening situations encountered in the real auditory environment (Bess, Tharpe & Gibler, 1986). As part of an experiment conducted on unilateral versus bilateral cochlear implantation, questionnaires were provided to parents of sequentially implanted children inquiring about the difficulty to decide for a second CI for their child, and if they noticed any benefit after the second implantation. As a result, 89% of parents agreed that if was not difficult to decide for a second CI. The 11% of parents who found it difficult to decide indicated worry stemming from: surgical procedures, possibility of a future intervention, or lack of information of the possible benefits of a second CI. 95% of parents reported that they had noticed a benefit of the second implant, especially in areas consisting of background noise, sound localization, and more relaxed and confident listening (Asp et al., 2012).
Most users of BI-CIs have the ability to take advantage of at least some, if not all of a typical hearing person’s auditory cues. The following advantages can most likely be offered by present bilateral hearing when compared with using a single CI. The ability to localize sounds directly translates to situations in the work place, social situations, recreational sport activities, and every day activities. Children undergoing bilateral implantation demonstrate improved lateralization and localization skills using both implants compared with using only the first or the second implant...

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