Breaking the sound Barrier………
Medicure Assist launches Cochlear Implant Surgery in India
The cochlear and hearing implant programme offers implantation for all types of cochlear and other ear/hearing implants (such as BAHA implant and Vibrant Soundbridge middle ear implant). Dr. Ameet is the lead cochlear implant surgeon, and has personally carried out over 450 Cochlear Implant Surgery in India in the last five years alone and along with his neurosurgeon also independently performed the first Auditory Brainstem Implant Surgery in India both in a child and an adult .
What is a cochlear implant?
A cochlear implant is an electronic device that can restore useful hearing and provide improved communication abilities for persons who have severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss (nerve deafness) and who cannot benefit from hearing aids.
How is an implant different from a hearing aid?
Cochlear implants differ from hearing aids in two important ways:
- Hearing aids simply amplify sounds. A cochlear implant, on the other hand, transforms speech and other sounds into electrical energy that is used to stimulate the hearing nerve in the inner ear.
- Unlike most hearing aids, cochlear implants have both internal and external components. The implant system consists of an external speech processor and headset (worn behind the ear) and an internal, surgically placed implant consisting of a receiver/stimulator package with an electrode array.
How does the cochlear implant work?
For people who are cochlear implant candidates, the outer ear and the middle ear function normally. However, in the inner ear (cochlea), the tiny hair cells are damaged or missing and do not generate electrical pulses to be sent to the hearing centres of the brain. Therefore, the brain does not perceive the sound.
The cochlear implant attempts to replace the function of the hair cells with electrical stimulation. The device is comprised of an externally worn ‘speech processor’ and an internal ‘implant’ comprising the receiver stimulator and electrode array. Sounds are picked up by the microphone of the speech processor. The speech processor analyses and codes sounds into electrical pulses. These pulses are sent to the surgically implanted receiver/stimulator package and through to the electrode array, which stimulates the residual nerve fibres in the cochlea. The hearing nerve then sends these electrical pulses to the brain and which are finally interpreted as sound.
Who can benefit from Cochlear Implant Surgery in India?
Any adult or child with bilateral (both ears) severe to profound sensorineural (nerve) hearing loss who obtains little or no benefit from hearing aids would be considered a candidate for a Cochlear Implant Surgery in India. Such deafness may be acquired following infection (such as meningitis), toxic effect of ototoxic drugs, trauma or age associated hearing loss. Some children may be born with deafness. Such congenital hearing impairment is not uncommon with 2 to 3 out of every 1000 live births are born with significant hearing loss. Such children need to be identified at the earliest. This ensures that appropriate measures are undertaken to rehabilitate their hearing loss at a time when language skills can most easily be acquired. Many of these children may eventually require a cochlear implant.
Before Cochlear Implant Surgery in India
There are various factors that need to be taken into consideration prior to Cochlear Implant Surgery in India. Patients who may be candidates for cochlear implantation would have met with their audiologist – speech therapist and ENT(Hearing implant) Surgeon. We often ask for input from other professionals in the team such as developmental paediatrician, neurologist, psychologist, education specialist etc. and the team would help decide the best option for the candidate.
- Complete audiological and speech assessment and trial with hearing aids. We need to know the severity and nature of the hearing loss, level of speech and language and the degree of benefit one gets with current hearing aids.
- Imaging – CT and MRI scanning of the ears and brain. We need to see the structure of the ears and the condition of the inner ear, hearing nerves and brain.
- Routine preoperative blood tests for anaesthesia. Patients would also be seen by a physician or paediatrician (in the cases of children) to ensure they are fit for general anaesthesia. All candidates need to be vaccinated (against H.influenza, Pneumococcus and Meningococcus) to reduce the risk of infections.
- Deciding the choice of implant – We have expertise in implanting all makes and models of implants. The various brands and models are detailed below. There are four companies that manufacture cochlear implants. Some offer different models depending on levels of technology used in the type of internal implant or the external processor.
Hospital Stay for Cochlear Implant Surgery in India
Hospital stay is likely to be a maximum of two days. We would normally admit on the day of the operation provided all the preoperative tests are satisfactory Cochlear Implant Surgery in India lasts about two hours and is performed while the patient is under general anaesthesia. The electrode array is inserted into the cochlea. The receiver/stimulator is secured to the skull. Typically, patients remain in the hospital for two nights. They have a bandage on their head which is removed after four days. Patients return to school or work as soon as they feel well enough to do so, usually within a week of surgery.
Switching on the implant after Cochlear Implant Surgery in India
Activation of the implant takes place three to four weeks after implantation, allowing enough time for the incision to heal properly. This is when the external processor is attached and activated by the audiologist. Following this the implant is ‘programmed’ or ‘mapped’. Mapping is done on a regular basis during postoperative rehabilitation to fine-tune the processor and get the best performance as the patient gets used to hearing with the implant.
Postoperative Mapping and (Re)Habilitation
Reabilitation is an essential part for those who have undergone Cochlear Implant Surgery in India and may be carried out at the hospital or at a center close to the patient’s home. All patients need Auditory Verbal Therapy (AVT). In Auditory Verbal Therapy, the emphasis is laid on making the child listen and speak normally, rather than on lip reading and visual cues. Learning to listen takes time and requires concerted efforts from the patient, the family and the person providing habilitation services. Thus the implant can offer a wide range of benefits, including hearing speech, environmental sounds and music.
Therapy can be carried out at our hearing centre or at a centre close to home and we would help by liaising with the local centre to make sure they have the appropriate facilities for this. Some of our outstation patients stay in Delhi for a period after the operation so that the initial mapping and therapy is done here and then they continue the same at home.
Cost of Cochlear Implant Surgery in India USD $20,000+ at World Class Hospitals:
All Inclusive comprehensive package including the implant
A. Hospital Stay: 2 days
B. Stay in India– 3-4 weeks
C. The package includes all pre-op investigations, consult with a Neurophysician, Psychologist and Post-op rehabilitation- Auditory Verbal Training (AVT) at no extra cost
Note: Cost Estimate for above include stay in a Private Room where a Companion can stay with the patient surgeon fee, medicines and consumables, nursing care, food and Airport Pick & Drop. More accurate treatment cost estimates can be provided if medical reports are emailed to us or after the patient is examined by doctors after arrival at hospital in India and medical tests are done after admission.
Best Cochlear Implant Surgery Hospitals in India
We have some of the best hospitals for Cochlear Implant Surgery in India. Using the latest available technology and techniques the Cochlear Implant Surgery is done. A large of doctors and surgeons are nationally renowned for their expertise in treating Cochlear Implant Surgery in India.
Read about BestHospitals in India for getting treatment abroad
Medicure Assist has been helping international patients in getting Cochlear Implant Surgery in India at world class hospitals. Our patients are fully satisfied with our service and consultancy. Some of the best hospitals in India work with us. We encourage our patients to first read about our patient testimonials and what they feel about medical tourism India. It will give you an idea about Medicure Assist and what drives our work. We have been serving medical tourists with sincerity and dedication since our inception.
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