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Cochlear Implant - Complications, Risks, Procedure, Surgery

Cochlear Implant - Complications, Risks, Procedure, Surgery

What is Cochlear Implant? 

Over 5% of the world’s population suffer from hearing loss due to acquired or congenital causes (WHO report). Hearing aids are most commonly used for deafness. No doubt hearing aids offer a great service to patients with hearing loss, but it is useful for people who need a certain sound to be louder.

In some medical or physiological conditions like hearing loss due to aging, diabetes, and injury the hearing aid can prove beneficial. Hearing aids amplify sound louder so that our hearing system can receive the sound waves.

A cochlear implant is a which helps to regain the hearing capacity of a patient who has a serious hearing loss due primarily to certain conditions or defects in the inner ear; mainly the area known as cochlea.

Cochlear implants are a great choice in sensorineural hearing loss caused by cochlear damage. It is useful for people who have an intact auditory nerve. Cochlear implants can prove beneficial to both adults and children. The device is surgically implanted inside the ear and skull. It bypasses the part of the ear which is defective and directly communicates with the auditory nerve.

The cochlear implant device has

A microphone.

An implant called an Electrode array is surgically placed in the inner part of the ear in the cochlear region, which collects impulses sends them to different parts of the auditory nerve.

A sound processor, which is an external device. It receives incoming sound waves and sends them to implants.

A transmitter that converts signals into electronic impulses.

Cochlear implants can benefit people

Who is suffering from severe bilateral hearing loss with a threshold of hearing above 90dB?

People suffering from sensorineural hearing loss.

People who have tried hearing aid and did not give them much benefit.

People who have scored less than 50 percent in the sentence recognition test.

Types of hearing loss

Conductive deafness

Any problem that interferes with the conductive function of the ear canal, tympanic membrane, or ossicles can result in conductive hearing loss.

Sensorineural deafness

Sensorineural deafness is caused by damage or defect in the cochlea, vestibulocochlear nerve, or auditory path. Sensorineural deafness in children causes impairment of speech discrimination, the latter is an abnormal perception of increased intensity of sound with increasing signal volume that results from the damage to the hair cells in the cochlea. This results in decreased functional dynamic range so that a small increase in sound intensity is uncomfortable.

Mixed

When conductive as well as sensorineural deafness is present, it is mixed deafness.

Types of devices for hearing loss

Cochlear devices

Hearing Aids- Conventional, Bone Anchored Hearing Aids, Vibrant sound bridge

Auditory brainstem implant

Assistive devices

Cochlear Implant Surgery Risks

Risks depend upon the overall health and medical history of the patient. It can lead to serious effects like

Bell’s Palsy- Injury to the facial nerve

Allergic reaction to general anesthesia

Cerebrospinal fluid leakage

Failure of the device

Why choose India for Cochlear Implant Surgery

India is Asia’s fastest-growing medical tourism destination. India has been a regional healthcare hub for countries such as Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Maldives, Bhutan and, the Middle East, Africa. Indian hospitals are building a reputation around the world by use of advanced technology, high-quality implants, internationally accepted safety, and quality standards for hospitals.

Doctors, Surgeons in India are highly qualified and skilled with a lot of experience. Also, there is a minimal language barrier issue. Moreover, the range of multi-specialty hospitals in India is entirely fitted with the most up-to-date facilities and has made the healthcare procedure incredibly viable and cost-effective for countless people around the world. Thus, India has emerged as a massively promising choice as a care destination for such patients.

India is the most preferred destination for patients pursuing low-cost Cochlear Implant Surgery. The expense of cochlear implant surgery in India is usually a lot cheaper with the same treatment and care in the US and other developing countries. India is the cheapest compared to some developing and developed countries. The cost for treatment and surgery is 30-50% less than in other countries. The cost may vary if there is any particular condition or complication present. The approximate cost of cochlear implant surgery in the USA, Singapore, Thailand, and India is given in the table.

Cochlear Implant Surgery Complications

Complications were sorted consistent with the time of onset, major/minor, and sort of implantation that had caused them (monaural, simultaneous bilateral, or re-implantation). Complication rates were calculated as proportions of the entire number of implantations. just in case of doubt on whether an event was caused by the procedure, we reported it as a complication.

Changes in preoperatively existing conditions (e.g. tinnitus and vertigo), although highly relevant, weren’t reported, because the method of retrospective file review wasn’t considered suitable for this. Major complications usually need to do with surgical technique and include flap necrosis, improper electrode placement, and rare facial problems. Minor complications include dehiscence of incisions, infection, facial stimulation, dizziness, and pedestal problems with the Ineraid device.

Complications were less frequent in children than adults and were more likely to occur within younger children than those above the age of seven years. There was no increased incidence of otitis in children who received the Nucleus Mini-22 device, and no reported sequelae from such otitis when it occurred.

Cochlear implantation may be a safe hearing rehabilitation surgical technique related to a coffee complication rate. However, surgeons must be conversant in these complications to make sure optimal prevention. Minor complications were mainly infectious in children (acute otitis media) and cochleovestibular in adults.  Only the minor complication rate was significantly higher within the adult population.

What are the pros and cons of a cochlear implant? 

Find pros and cons of cochlear implants.

Pros

If you’ve got severe deafness, a cochlear implant could improve your quality of life. The benefits depend upon your procedure and rehabilitation process. With a cochlear implant, you would possibly be able to:

hear different sounds, like footsteps
comprehend speech without lip reading
hear voices on the phone
hear music
watch TV without captions
For babies and toddlers, the device could help them find out how to speak.

Cochlear implant surgery may be a generally safe procedure. However, it presents potential risks, such as:

Cons

bleeding
swelling
ringing within the ear (tinnitus)
dizziness
infection at surgery site
dry mouth
taste changes
facial paralysis
balance issues
meningitis
surgery to get rid of the implant (due to infection) or fix the defective implant
Your specific risks depend upon your overall health and medical conditions.

Also, cochlear implants don’t restore normal hearing. for a few individuals, it’d not help in the least.

Other potential cons include:

Having to get rid of the external component to wash or swim
Regularly recharging batteries or using new ones
Losing remaining natural hearing within the ear with the implant
During sports activity or accidents the implant can be damage
Extensive rehabilitation to assist you to find out how to use the implant.

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