The hearing and cochlear implant debate! Share your opinion!

deafdude1

New Member
I love a good debate and ive read many older threads about CIs in various forums. I am neutral to CIs and can equally see the pros and cons. I am going to be frank/blunt in my debate and nothing I say is meant to offend. I am not making choices for anyone here, only debating facts and logic.

1. Is it true many children who's parents decided on CIs grow up to resent this? How would the parents then determine if it's in the child's best interests or not? Is there a harm in waiting till the child is older?

2. From reading around, it appears that the CI satisfaction rate is 75%. Ive been told it's 95%. Could it be possible that the satisfaction rate has drastically increased in the last few years?

3. Im reading about implants being some elective surgery/procedure in order to have the "latest and greatest" or to "upgrade" from hearing aids. I feel that criteria for candidacy is getting too lax nowdays. Ive read a few recent stories of people only moderately HOH/deaf who somehow qualified for CIs either from the insurance or out of pocket by a surgeon willing to operate. They had a hearing loss of around 50db in some frequencies.

They will say that their speech perception is poor and that sounds are distorted with HAs. The thing im saying is CI is not a cure and not an instant fix. If they don't make the effort to train for speech comphrension with HAs, it won't be any different with CIs for the matter. As for distortion, since when is 2% distortion alot? The sounds I hear are very similar to the sounds my parents hear. I repeat a sound I hear and my parents say I repeated it correctly.

Even my audiologist says I can improve my speech if I wear my HAs more and train more. If he believes someone with hearing as bad as me can improve, surely someone with less severe/profound loss can do even better in less time!

Lip reading is a valuable option for understanding speech. I can understand 80% of what my parents say from lip reading alone without wearing HAs. Wearing HAs improves this a few % more. I sometimes don't wear HAs because I have little trouble understanding my parents and I guess im just lazy to open the box and insert my HAs.

Another thing that irks me is how they show the aided score with CI is better than with HA then I find out that they were NOT wearing the best HA and/or they had their HA programmed at significently less than the maximum potental! People will say that louder is not necessarily better. I might understand this if you had a corner audiogram and couldn't hear above 1000Hz. Missing so many higher frequencies will pose a challenge to speech comphrension, but there's always writing, lip reading and sign language(which I never needed to learn) I also do a pretty decent job pronouncing words and get lots of compliments for this.

4. How can louder not be better? Youd hear alot more faint sounds that you never heard before! Some people have the gain on their HAs down so far they barely even hear their own voice and talk too loud! I have this problem if I don't wear HAs! Take someone with normal hearing and stuff earplugs, he will complain that everything is too quiet. Why should it be any different for HOH people?

5. There's an ongoing debate on how much residual hearing a person can have before getting CI. I remember years ago you had to have none left to qualify for CIs, especially since CI would destroy your residual hearing anyway. Also CI technology was primitive and crude and inferior to HAs if HAs worked for you. CIs were seen as a last restort if no HA gave any aided hearing, your loss would be greater than what an audiometer could go as well.

As with my debate point #3, does anyone agree that the amount of residual hearing is the most important criteria? It's also the method that's least subjective, especially since you can use AB as a fool proof test, no worrying about a person not pushing the button when he actually hears a sound. I read someone say "don't push the button till the sound is loud enough to rattle your head then you will "pass" for a CI by failing the hearing test" doesn't this make you mad? That person is not only deluding himself but cheating himself and others out of lots of money! As for speech, he can simply pretend not to understand most words, how would they prove it?

Thus a person should have an average of 100db hearing loss(divide the numbers over 11 frequencies. A NR counts as 125db) and not better than 70db hearing at any frequency(125Hz to 8000Hz on the audiogram)



In your opinion, which of the following audiograms(found at Google images) would be a candidate for CI? Would any be considered borderline/ambigious due to the steeply sloping loss and corner audiogram? Which should definately not get a CI as the odds are not good enough of it being better than HAs? Ive done the math below, debate among yourself!

70, 75, 90, 100, 110, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125/11=109db average.
55, 70, 100, 110, 120, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125/11=110db average.
25, 60, 110, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125/11=109db average.
55, 55, 75, 95, 110, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125, 125/11=104db average.
50, 55, 65, 70, 75, 90, 100, 110, 115, 125, 125/11=89db average.
My audiogram: 65, 70, 90, 105, 110, 110, 115, 115, 120, 125, 125/11=105db average.

6. The cost and risk must be mentioned. Someone said CI surgury is safer than most other surguries. Ill have to research this further, but we all know that no type of surgury is without numerous risks. Even the surgeons will present you a partial list of risks and have you sign an informed consent. This protects him from some liabilities and informs if you are sure you still wish to go ahead.

The costs are $50,000 and up, sometimes as high as $100,000 per CI. Double(or near) that cost for bilateral. For those of you who are uninsured or don't qualify for insurance funding, this is a huge amount of out of pocket expenses. There are people that can save up for a CI or to get a 2nd CI which is rarely funded by insurance. But many can't afford this or have more important things such as buying a house, car, food, clothes, college and paying taxes/bills. Even with insurance, you are paying for it every month plus typically at least 20% out of pocket expenses, $10k cost on a $50k CI. It's actually a shame more insurance companies don't fund hearing aids! I know people who go the CI route because of that reason alone! Not a good reason in itself. You can always buy used HAs for cheap, buy online or negotiate the price down.

7. Is it true that those who are post lingual, especially those late deafened are the ones who have the strongest desire for CI? It seems logical since us prelinguals have no idea what we are missing. We do wonder what high frequencies sound like, what it's like to hear near normal. But many of us are not terribly unhappy to be deaf and are content to lip read and hear environmental sounds. Those of us who are open to the idea of CI, how many of you are worried about not improving across all frequencies, especially low frequencies? If you have a HA aided score of better than 40db, especially if better than 30db, isn't that better than the average aided CI results? Also how much of an issue is the likley probability of losing your residual natural hearing?

Also how bad must your own hearing be to get a CI, in db HL? Do you consider your hearing bad enough, if not how much worse must it be? Isn't it logical that the worse your hearing is and the less benefit you get with HA, the better odds youll see a significent improvement with CI?

I have presented some valid points to my debate. You may present your own points as well as support or refute my points. I wanted to add that ive read deafdyke's posts and she shares the same views as I do. Like me, she remains neutral. I finished reading one of her posts about all the pressure there is to force a CI and that the parents think a child isn't normal if he's not hearing and that a CI would help the parents by making the child better hear/understand them. I also read that most hearing parents of a deaf child would get the child a CI but only 50% of deaf parents would get their deaf child a CI.
 

Daredevel7

Adrenaline Junky
Premium Member
That's a lot to read. my my. I don't even know where to start.

A little background info: I was born profoundly deaf and got implanted several months ago.

It's so hard to do the statistics of "happiness" of one having the CI. Are you asking if children grow up resenting having CIs or resenting how they are treated (like a hearing) BECAUSE they have CIs? Two very different things. I've noticed that the frustrations of a person who grew up with a CI is very similar to a HoH person. They both can hear a lot, but because they can hear a lot, people assume they can hear everything.

How can you determine if waiting to get a CI will harm the child if we can do fine without the CI? I did perfectly fine without the CI, however, I doubt my life would be WORSE with the CI. I can only see CI bringing benefits. You can only determine "harm" if you can magically see one's life with and without CI.

I don't know much about moderate/HoH people being candidates for the CI. I can tell you that I thought I heard okay with the HAs (relied a lot on lipreading), and didn't realize how much sound I was missing when I got the CI. Also, training to hear with the HA seems to me totally different from training to hear with the CI, at least for a born (or pre-lingually) deaf person because there are the adjustments that need to be done. With the HAs, it's highly likely that you will miss some sounds NO MATTER how loud it is. With the CI, most, if not all, sounds will be "heard", but adjustments need to be made THEN you have to learn the sounds. For example, recently I had AVT, and with the CI, I could NOT tell the difference between bee and baa, and with the HA, I can easily tell the difference (which means I "know" what they sound like), so my CI needs to be adjusted for that. However I can hear the t, p, s, sh very easily with the CI where I cant even hear them AT ALL with the HA. The HA's can only give you so much.

I'll stop for now!
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
No one is allowed to talk about pros and cons of CI. The implantees get very shrill and defensive if anybody says anything against it. Sorry.
 

Daredevel7

Adrenaline Junky
Premium Member
No one is allowed to talk about pros and cons of CI. The implantees get very shrill and defensive if anybody says anything against it. Sorry.
I was shrill? Shrill just makes me think of alien's emitting a horrible scream. :)
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
I was shrill? Shrill just makes me think of alien's emitting a horrible scream. :)
Actually I did not even mean you. You seem to have some ability left to reason.:lol: ncff07 is still normal too.
(could be just a matter of time :hmm:)
 

deafskeptic

Active Member
Premium Member
No one is allowed to talk about pros and cons of CI. The implantees get very shrill and defensive if anybody says anything against it. Sorry.
Not me. I notice that parents who implant children with CIs tend to be pro-oral. I thought Fair Jour was an expectation to the rule but I was wrong.

CIs can go wrong. Witness Travis' (smithr) problems with his CI.
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
Not me. I notice that parents who implant children with CIs tend to be pro-oral. I thought Fair Jour was an expectation to the rule but I was wrong.

CIs can go wrong. Witness Travis' (smithr) problems with his CI.
Hi. :Oops: I just keep forgetting everyone with CI not the most outspoken and angry. Sorry. Sorry. Sorry.
 

Mockingbird

New Member
1. Is it true many children who's parents decided on CIs grow up to resent this? How would the parents then determine if it's in the child's best interests or not? Is there a harm in waiting till the child is older?
Very few resent the CI itself if they were implanted young, but their frustrations would likely be similar to HOH people, especially with the oral fetish a lot of hearing parents have (hehehe i made a funny)

2. From reading around, it appears that the CI satisfaction rate is 75%. Ive been told it's 95%. Could it be possible that the satisfaction rate has drastically increased in the last few years?
It's possible, but I'm a strong believer in chaos theory. I think that the huge discrepancy between different studies could easily be explained to the question having a different, more suggestive phrasing. For example;

Study one: Are you satisfied with your CI?
Person one: No (It is still lacking and desperately needs improvement)

Study two: Are you dissatisfied with your CI?
Person one: No (It did everything I expected it to do)

And then they translate it into a study. We need continuity in these types of studies.

3. Im reading about implants being some elective surgery/procedure in order to have the "latest and greatest" or to "upgrade" from hearing aids. I feel that criteria for candidacy is getting too lax nowdays.
I believe that the same services available to CI users should be offered to HA users rather than HA users switching to CI and getting training in lipreading and all that stuff and claiming that it was the CI that made the difference. It irks me that health insurance (excluding tricare in the US) won't pay for hearing aids under all/most circumstances yet if you want a prohibitively costly and complicated procedure that may just do the same or worse than HAs they'll gladly foot the bill.

4. How can louder not be better? Youd hear alot more faint sounds that you never heard before! Some people have the gain on their HAs down so far they barely even hear their own voice and talk too loud! I have this problem if I don't wear HAs! Take someone with normal hearing and stuff earplugs, he will complain that everything is too quiet. Why should it be any different for HOH people?
HAs do not help when they are physically painful to listen to. Don't you think that if we could solve all hearing issues with "MOAR VOLUME!!!!!" that we would have done that already?

5. There's an ongoing debate on how much residual hearing a person can have before getting CI. I remember years ago you had to have none left to qualify for CIs, especially since CI would destroy your residual hearing anyway. Also CI technology was primitive and crude and inferior to HAs if HAs worked for you. CIs were seen as a last restort if no HA gave any aided hearing, your loss would be greater than what an audiometer could go as well.
You should be judged as being able to achieve significant improvement in speech recognition and environmental awareness using a CI. Decibels don't mean much.

I'm not bothering with 6 and 7, we've beaten those horses way too many times now.
 

Buffalo

Active Member
2. From reading around, it appears that the CI satisfaction rate is 75%. Ive been told it's 95%. Could it be possible that the satisfaction rate has drastically increased in the last few years?
Or it is the CI companies who raised the percentage in order to get more deaf kids implanted. I won't be surprised if they lie in order to gain something in business. Just be careful in where you got the information from.
 

deafdude1

New Member
I believe that the same services available to CI users should be offered to HA users rather than HA users switching to CI and getting training in lipreading and all that stuff and claiming that it was the CI that made the difference. It irks me that health insurance (excluding tricare in the US) won't pay for hearing aids under all/most circumstances yet if you want a prohibitively costly and complicated procedure that may just do the same or worse than HAs they'll gladly foot the bill.
Agree with you!


HAs do not help when they are physically painful to listen to. Don't you think that if we could solve all hearing issues with "MORE VOLUME!!!!!" that we would have done that already?
I asked my audiologist this and he knows how to program them so they will be loud but not painful. Like CIs, HAs also have a treshold and comfort level. You want the treshold level to be as low as possible, yet never exceed the comfort level. If I can get my treshold down to 15db at 250Hz, its proof that HAs do a great job, well provided you still have residual hearing.


You should be judged as being able to achieve significant improvement in speech recognition and environmental awareness using a CI. Decibels don't mean much.
One of the posters got down to 10db with CI and actually says it's too good. She's now happy being in the 15-25db range. She tried 40db and everything was too quiet. So she is proof that db does matter to a point. Try turning down the volume on your HA, youll notice everything is too quiet and that people seem to be whispering. Also when you talk people comment on how loud you talk. So yes db is still important.

Thanks for your replies. Keep them comming, I like debates!
 

deafdyke

Well-Known Member
Are you asking if children grow up resenting having CIs or resenting how they are treated (like a hearing) BECAUSE they have CIs? Two very different things. I've noticed that the frustrations of a person who grew up with a CI is very similar to a HoH person. They both can hear a lot, but because they can hear a lot, people assume they can hear everything
. Or b/c they are thought to be more "hearing then deaf"

Or it is the CI companies who raised the percentage in order to get more deaf kids implanted. I won't be surprised if they lie in order to gain something in business. Just be careful in where you got the information from.
Ditto. While the CI is AWESOME for those who are obvious right off the bat canidates, it does seem like there's a lot of "Big Pharma" style pushing and playing around with research results.
 

shel90

Audist are not welcome
Premium Member
Not me. I notice that parents who implant children with CIs tend to be pro-oral. I thought Fair Jour was an expectation to the rule but I was wrong.

CIs can go wrong. Witness Travis' (smithr) problems with his CI.
Same here..thought the same thing too. Oh well.
 

Hear Again

New Member
it does seem like there's a lot of "Big Pharma" style pushing and playing around with research results.
It's no different than what hearing aid manufacturers do.

Where do you get the idea that CI companies manipulate research? They perform extensive studies to come up with the results they do.
 

Hear Again

New Member
No one is allowed to talk about pros and cons of CI. The implantees get very shrill and defensive if anybody says anything against it. Sorry.
The same could be said for those who are anti-CI. The minute a CI user talks about the success they have with their implant, someone who is anti-CI comes along and talks about how risky CI surgery is or worse yet, spreads inaccurate information about CIs in general (for example, CI surgery is brain surgery).
 

ncff07

Resident Punk Ass
Premium Member
The minute a CI user talks about the success they have with their implant, someone who is anti-CI comes along and talks about how risky CI surgery is or worse yet, spreads inaccurate information about CIs in general (for example, CI surgery is brain surgery).
im not here to debate but lets test that theory, ill expand on it more in the other thread later.

i had the 2nd mapping friday. then tested using the static noise at different tones and speech recognition. when we were done she showed me the results. 70% recognition in pre recorded sentences read at 20db and the point of hearing the noises were right at 20db accross the board. at 2 weeks after activation she said thata a really really good score. i think there listing my CI and progress already as a success and i was told it should still get better over time.

and whoever can knock cochlear implants all they want but damn it they work!
 

Hear Again

New Member
and whoever can knock cochlear implants all they want but damn it they work!
They sure do. :)

Despite the fact that I had severe-profound hearing loss for 10 years prior to receiving my first CI, I was able to score 95% for sentences in quiet and 90% for sentences in noise.

From what I've been told, if someone has been severely to profoundly deaf (or profoundly deaf) for more than 3-5 years, it will take time before they notice any significant improvement with the CI.

My results above were achieved within a year following my activation.
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
They sure do. :)

Despite the fact that I had severe-profound hearing loss for 10 years prior to receiving my first CI, I was able to score 95% for sentences in quiet and 90% for sentences in noise.

From what I've been told, if someone has been severely to profoundly deaf (or profoundly deaf) for more than 3-5 years, it will take time before they notice any significant improvement with the CI.

My results above were achieved within a year following my activation.
Those figures in honesty don't count for someone deafened in adulthood. It is misleading. A whole different story.
 
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