First steps towards getting the cochlear implant.

After some research, talks with family and friends I knew I wanted to start the process to get the cochlear implant. I made an appointment with my E.N.T doctor at my local hospital and he knew my history quite well as we had spent alot of time together in the past due to my recurring ear infection. These infections would drag on sometimes for months at a time which caused me to be on antibiotics quite often to the point my body had now become immune to them.

In 2018 alone I spent more than 10 months of that year on constant antibiotic changes, as often as every single week we were trying a new one to see if that one would make a difference and finally make the infection dissapear. In one of those frustrating appointments with him I was in tears from the pain and frustration of yet still having the infection, going through another suction procedure to remove the puss I finally said to him I could not take this anymore. That I had finally hit that place where I was beyond tired of not only not hearing and struggling with everyday life but also of these infections. So I told him about my research about the cochlear implant and asked him to refer me to the the cochlear implant team in UK.

About a year after this appointment I finally got to travel to UK for my first visit with the cochlear implant team at the Nuffield ear,nose and throat hospital. The team was amazing from the get go and we soon started the process to see if I could be a candidate for the device. I had hearing tests, speech tests, lip reading tests ( with and without sound) I met with the consultant and His team and we spoke about why I thought I was a candidate for this operation.  After a whole day of tests there we were told that there would be more. The next part of the process was thinking have CT scans done to make sure all the bits needed for the surgery to work were still viable especially after all the reccurent infections. Once that was done I had MRI’s done, after all the possible tests were done I was scored on them on eligibility. I met once again with the consultant professor Sayed and his team and proceeded to learn my scores. It would be my first failed attempt at getting the cochlear implant. I was told that I was just under elegibility lines as my lip reading was still very helpful to me and I could still manage with that. I was told that we would try some new in the market hearing aids and see how things went in a year with them. So they took me to another room molded my new hearing aids and off we went. I remember feeling devestated, and crying so much because I knew that yes I was coping with lip reading but that was no longer enough for me. I missed the hearing world around me, the simple things. But as per Thier instructions I was ready and willing to try the new hearing aids out.

I came back home and adapted with the new hearing aids. Tried my best to make them work with me and they did for a short while. At first I was thrilled because they were working and I was hearing better. But within a few months these stopped being helpful to me again. In the mean time I was still suffering with constant infections and was in alot of pain, I missed alot of work due to the infections and the migraines were starting to get out of control too. I was going to have the puss suctioned out as often as I could to get a bit of relief.  I was starting to really struggle with my lip reading too as I was always concentrating and I was just tired all the time. I knew my hearing was getting worse by the day because if these infections. One day whilst there with the ENT after about a year I decided to ask him to try again, I didn’t want to give up! I knew that I really wanted the cochlear implant and I was going to fight for it as much as I possibly could.  I was tired of the struggle, I was tired of the missing out on things and of not feeling included in alot. My hearing, the infections the lipreading was just all becoming too much for me to handle and I needed a solution. So I waited and finally I got my next appointment to travel to see the cochlear implant team in UK.

Would this be it?……

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