Author Topic: Cochlear implant for SSD  (Read 4756 times)

debbiefletcher

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Cochlear implant for SSD
« on: July 15, 2016, 10:04:15 am »
I saw my neurotologist for my five year postop visit. He said they are now doing cochlear implants at Duke for SSD. He has done eight in the past year, all with good results. Has anyone had this done, and if so, are you happy with the outcome?

ANGuy

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Re: Cochlear implant for SSD
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2016, 08:21:17 pm »
If you don't mind, who are you seeing at Duke and how has your overall experience been?

I am currently watch and wait and have been receiving my care at Duke and just wanted your opinion of the place.  So far, I am very pleased. Sorry I don't have any experience with cochlear implants but I was told that they can do them there for SSD as a result of AN.  I didn't explore details because at that time, it was a detail for "later" as opposed to "now".  But, the idea of it was encouraging.
Diagnosed June 2014 1cm AN at 47 years of age.  Had fluctuating symptoms since 2006.    6 mos MRI (Dec 2014) showed no growth, MRI  in July 2015 showed no growth.  MRI Jan 2016 showed no growth.  MRI Aug 2016 showed no growth.  I'm gonna ride the WW train as long as I can.

alabamajane

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Re: Cochlear implant for SSD
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2016, 08:01:25 am »
Hi Debbie,
Cochlear does have a BAHA -- bone anchored hearing assist device for SSD.  It is a different device than their Coclear implant. So I'm not sure which  you are asking about. But I have the BAHA and it does work pretty good for SSD. The sound is transmitted through a processor attached to an implanted screw in the skull on the deaf side to the hearing ear. Therefore you get sounds from the deaf side which you don't without any device.

  It's a good choice for SSD. Some folks don't do anything for their SSD and do fine. I got mine about 3 years post op just to see if it would help and it does in some situations. However, to me,, SSD is not all that difficult to deal with.  It just requires some adjustments in positioning yourself around others at times.  ;)

You can go to Cochlear's website to learn more about the BAHA. Oticon Medical also makes a BAHA device. Nothing will give you the hearing you had. It is still difficult to hear in noisy settings like restaurants,, you just learn where to sit in relation to others. But it is a good device and option for SSD people.

I hope this helps. If your Dr meant the Coclear implant for you then I have no experience with that device. I don't think I've read of anyone on here who did get that device for SSD. I could be wrong though ,, it's happened before,,,  ???
Good luck with your choice. 
translab Oct 27, 2011
facial nerve graft Oct 31,2011, eyelid weight removed Oct 2013, eye closes well

BAHA surgery Oct. 2014, activated Dec. 26

debbiefletcher

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Re: Cochlear implant for SSD
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2016, 08:35:05 am »
ANguy, sorry to be so long replying. I was on vacation last week and tried to stay unplugged as much as possible. I see Dr David Kaylie at Duke. He seems to  be on the cutting edge of improvements to AN surgery and treatment and I have no complaints with his care.

ANGuy

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Re: Cochlear implant for SSD
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2016, 04:06:26 pm »
ANguy, sorry to be so long replying. I was on vacation last week and tried to stay unplugged as much as possible. I see Dr David Kaylie at Duke. He seems to  be on the cutting edge of improvements to AN surgery and treatment and I have no complaints with his care.


You have excellent taste in Drs.  You are a woman of distinction, class, wisdom. 

Translation: I see Dr. Kaylie as well ;D
Diagnosed June 2014 1cm AN at 47 years of age.  Had fluctuating symptoms since 2006.    6 mos MRI (Dec 2014) showed no growth, MRI  in July 2015 showed no growth.  MRI Jan 2016 showed no growth.  MRI Aug 2016 showed no growth.  I'm gonna ride the WW train as long as I can.

debbiefletcher

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Re: Cochlear implant for SSD
« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2016, 09:08:03 am »
Thank you, ANguy. I don't blame you for WW. My little friend was 8.5mm, but I'm not a WW kind of gal, so we went ahead with the surgery. I have partial paralysis of the facial muscles on the surgical side, and have to get Botox every four months for synkinesis. Have you attended the Eastern NC AN Support Group meetings? I am the co-leader and we meet quarterly. Our next meeting is August 6th at the Chapel Hill Public Library at 1pm, and we will be Caring and Sharing our individual stories. We would love to have you tell us about your WW experience.

TomB66

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Re: Cochlear implant for SSD
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2016, 01:20:47 pm »
I discussed the cochlear implant option with my doctor. Although there is a possibility that it would work there is also a possibility that it would not. Therefore most insurances will not cover a cochlear implant. Many will cover a BAHA.   Now with that being said, it would depend upon how much nerve damage was done whether a cochlear implant would work. If you're nervous in tact after the AN has been removed, there still is a question of internal damage to the nerve which cannot be visually seen. This is one reason why doctors will veer away from the cochlear option. The price difference between the two is about $25,000.
1.6cm retrosigmoid, 10/1/2015.  Living the dream....

leapyrtwins

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Re: Cochlear implant for SSD
« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2016, 02:36:45 pm »
As a Cochlear BAHA wearer - and a Cochlear volunteer - I just wanted to clear up some misconceptions on this thread  :)

Cochlear Implants (CIs) aren't typically indicated for those with SSD (single-sided deafness).  People with SSD (also known as unilateral deafness) typically are candidates for the BAHA.  CIs are more common for those with bilateral deafness (deafness in both ears). 

The majority of insurance companies do cover CIs, not very many cover BAHAs (it depends on your insurance policy).  However, you can always "fight" for coverage.  First of all, it's important to note when requesting coverage that the BAHA is not a hearing aid (since most insurance policies don't cover hearing aids).  A BAHA is a prosthesis or an implant and needs to be coded as such.  Second, if you are turned down for coverage you shouldn't give up.  Keeping pushing for coverage.  Persistent people generally get coverage because they won't take no for an answer.  Cochlear will actually help you work with your insurance company to see what your insurance policy covers; I'm not sure about Oticon, but they may do the same.

It's also important to note that if your insurance policy covers CIs and refuses to pay for a BAHA you have grounds to mention "discrimination" to them.  If they are paying for bilaterally deaf policyholders to be able to hear better, and they deny you because you are "only" unilaterally deaf that is not fair. 

BAHAs aren't for everyone, but mine has been a Godsend; I can't imagine life without it.   Some people are opposed to another surgery (for the implant) but it's nothing like AN surgery.  My implant was done outpatient while I was wide awake.  My skull was numbed with lidocaine while the titanium rod was implanted into my skull (involves a special diamond-tipped drill) and, no it's not as bad as it sounds; I didn't feel a thing.  My doc does about 95% of BAHA implants with local anesthesia, but will use general anesthesia if the patient requests it.  The implant procedure was about 90 minutes and I walked out of the hospital afterward.

I upgraded to the Cochlear BAHA5 about a year go - originally had a Cochlear Divino followed by a Cochlear BP100 - and I just love it.  It's the smallest BAHA on the market and it's very powerful. 

Best,

Jan


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

 


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