Author Topic: getting hearing back?  (Read 3371 times)


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getting hearing back?
« on: March 03, 2010, 01:51:18 pm »
After my surgery in Dec 2009 to remove an AN, I was told that I would have SSD. The nerve was severed.
Today I had a conversation on the phone with my "deaf" ear. It was very faint but I could make out what they were
saying. I don't want to get too excited. Could it be vibration? I know I had nothing in that ear before. NOTHING,
Like I said, I don't want to get too excited but i can't help it. Does anyone have any thoughts on this or had a
similar experience?



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Re: getting hearing back?
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2010, 02:11:17 pm »
I would assume that if the hearing nerve was severed at surgery, then more than likely what you were "hearing" was vibration over to the cochlea of the good ear..  Very similar bone conduction used by BAHA, TransEar and Ponto..  While the phone was on your "bad" ear, the sound waves were somehow trasferred over to the other side.. hence, you "hear" it however faint...

I have never heard of hearing coming back after surgery..  Rule of thumb that I've always used is whatever hearing you have at the time of treatment is the BEST you can hope for after..  If you're SSD after treatment, then likely that's a permanent thing as hearing doesn't come back after it's gone.

Weirder things have happened, though.. So, I could be all wet.  :)

Diagnosed 4/10/08 - 3cm Right AN
12hr retrosig 5/8/08 w/Drs Vrabec and Trask in Houston, Tx
Some facial paralysis post-op but most movement is back, some tinitus.  SSD on right.
Story documented here:

"I must be having fun all wrong!"  - Roger Creager

Jim Scott

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Re: getting hearing back?
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2010, 03:01:20 pm »
Victor ~

I have to thank Brian ('Pooter') for saving me a lot of typing because had I encountered your question a bit sooner, I would have given you approximately the same answer he did. 

Unfortunately, the hearing nerve does not re-grow so it's highly unlikely that you 'heard' sound in your deaf ear.  Frankly, although it would have to be termed a miracle for you to regain hearing in the affected ear, I would be delighted to be proven wrong.

4.5 cm AN diagnosed 5/06.  Retrosigmoid surgery 6/06.  Follow-up FSR completed 10/06.  Tumor shrinkage & necrosis noted on last MRI.  Life is good. 

Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is.  The way we cope with it is what makes the difference.


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Re: getting hearing back?
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2010, 03:49:12 pm »
If the nerve was severed, hearing will not return. If it was stretched, maybe. It's a very finicky nerve and does not like manipulation.

I am one of the lucky ones. Bear in mind that I did not have an AN, rather a microvascular decompression of the facial nerve to try to correct for hemifacial spasm. Interestingly enough, single side deafness is the biggest risk during an MVD. My hearing nerve was damaged by stretching during surgery and I was completely deaf on the left side at my post-op checkup. However, it improved to about 85% within a few weeks and has stayed there. I only notice in crowds and arena-type environments, and the only modification I have to make to my lifestyle is not holding the phone to my left ear.

MVD for hemifacial spasm 6/2/08
left side facial paresis
 12/100 facial function - 7/29/08
 46 - 11/25/08
 53 - 05/12/09
left side SSD approx. 4 weeks
 low-frequency hearing loss; 85% speech recognition 7/28/08
1.8 gram thin profile platinum eyelid weight 8/12/08
Fitted for scleral lens 5/9/13


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Re: getting hearing back?
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2010, 04:52:27 pm »
Ok, so that was pretty much the answer I was expecting.  I am however looking into theTransEar so it's nice to know it might be of some help.
Does anyone know if there is a reason why someone would not be a good candidate for the TransEar? The BAHA is out of the question for
me as I would like to avoid any more surgeries no matter how small (unless absolutely necessary). I know that my hearing will never be the same
again even with an aid but any improvement is welcome.  Just the fact that I'm able to "hear" a phone conversation using my deaf ear is at least


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Re: getting hearing back?
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2010, 04:58:31 pm »

Take a look at this thread from me.   ;D
Proton Radiation for my hemangioma at MGH December 2009.  Hearing has improved.  Doing great!


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Re: getting hearing back?
« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2010, 05:19:17 pm »
BTW, can anyone recommend a good audiologist in the San Diego or Las Vegas areas? I live in Vegas but am recovering in El Cajon (San Diego).
I'm not yet sure when I'll be well enough to go back home so I might need to see one here unless I miraculously feel great overnight which I
doubt very much.

Also, just a quick thanks to everyone on this forum for making my recovery a much less traumatic one.

Much love to all,



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Re: getting hearing back?
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2010, 09:06:48 pm »
Victor -

damaged facial nerves can regenerate themselves; damaged hearing nerves cannot.  Severed nerves cannot regenerate at all.


Retrosig 5/31/07 Drs. Battista & Kazan (Hinsdale, Illinois)
Left AN 3.0 cm (1.5 cm @ diagnosis 6 wks prior) SSD. BAHA implant 3/4/08 (Dr. Battista) Divino 6/4/08  BP100 4/2010 BAHA 5 8/2015

I don't actually "make" trouble..just kind of attract it, fine tune it, and apply it in new and exciting ways