Mapping

This week I had another mapping. Its been a year and a half since my second Medel implant. From the previous tests it seemed the right ear was not performing quite as well as my left. That was surprising since my right ear had been my stronger ear. After the single word test however the right ear scored 70% and the left ear 48%. My audio said my left ear wasn’t catching the soft sounds of the consonants, always the harder ones for hearing challenged folks. That however was at 10 DBL below the last test 6 months ago. So, the score looks bad but it is because it was at a lower volume. So my audie went to work on my processor and had me back and forth in the booth about four times. I could tell she was really working hard and impressed with her interest in booting me up more. Ultimately she did improve my hearing score in the left side by boosting some of the settings in the processor.

She wanted to impress on me that she has few patients that score 100% on sentences like I do so I’m still doing really well. She even called me her Superstar! The trend in testing now is to push folks scores in those lower DBL volumes. The single word tests are hard for me and I want to yell at her to turn the darn volume up. So many of the words are challenging while the sentences are easier to put into context.

Over all a good visit and I’m lucky to have such a conscientious¬† audiologist.

Activation for Second Implant

It has been almost two weeks since the initial activation of my second implant. When my audiologist first turned it on I heard a lot of very high pitched sounds. Her voice was really squeaky and there were a lot of other sounds that made me think of Christmas. I was probably associating it with Christmas movies. She told me it was not unusual and that the brain would adjust. The sound is still high pitched and Mickey Mouse but I can have a conversation with the people in my house using just the newly implanted side. My theory is that the electrodes in the cochlear probably aren’t positioned exactly in the same place so when they are fired they are both ImageImageImageImagestimulating different parts of the cochlear. Combined with my other implant the two sounds seem to blend. I remember my first implant sounding like a kazoo but definitely not as high pitched.

Since I chose MedEl I am also testing out the Rondo to decide if I want to have two of these or one free Rondo and the traditional behind the ear device. They both sound the same right now and the Rondo is very light and comfortable. I tend to knock it off sometimes especially when I have to pull something over my head. If I had short hair I might consider using the Rondo on both sides. The Rondo comes with 3 disposable batteries which last about 4 days. I figured it would cost over $300 a year for batteries while the behind the ear device uses rechargeable. However, when they need to be replaced they cost about $100 apiece. For now my rechargables will last another two years and I have a 5 year replacement warranty on them.

Second Implant date

I now have a date for my second implant which will be in January. I get to pick the new Rondo or stay with my current Opus2 processor. The plus is that MedEl will give me an extra processor so actually I’ll be getting three as part of the promotion for Rondo. ¬†I decided to go with two Rondos and one extra Opus2 so I have that in case I prefer the Opus2. Getting the second implant is definitely a nervous choice but better than not hearing stuff on my right side now. Also, I feel a little guilty because I do hear a lot better now since my first implant. I have been trying to get as much information about the Rondo as possible but it’s only been out since this past spring.¬†