This is a website dedicated to my Journey towards getting a Cochlear Implant and learning to hear all over again. Background

I have been losing my hearing since I was four years old. No one has ever been able to give me a reason to why my hearing declined over the years, and there is no one on either side of my family who are deaf. I was lucky in one respect that I have post lingual deafness, which has meant my speech improved with speech therapy even after my hearing declined to the point where I was profoundly deaf at 14 years of age.

I have always got by with two hearing aids provided by the NHS. I went to mainstream school; college and university using note taker support where I obtained a degree.

By the time I was 27 in 2004, I realised that hearing aids were no longer enough to allow me to be an active and independent part of the hearing world. It was getting harder and harder to hear speech sounds and affecting my ability to lip-read. I finally decided that perhaps a cochlear implant might be the answer and requested my GP to make a referral to the Cochlear Implant Programme at Manchester University and Manchester Royal Infirmary.

My opertaion was done on Monday the 13th of June 2005 by Mr Saeed at the Manchester Royal Infirmary. I was lucky enough to be the second person in Salford to get the new Freedom Implant from Cochlear which was released in April of 2005. It was switched on July 20th 2005, it did not immediately give me sound - I had to work hard to get my brain tuned in. Within a few weeks things were getting much easier and I have not looked back since!

If you would like to read more about how I am doing then Please take a moment to check out My Cochlear Implant Blog



My Cochlear Photo's

Date Picture
(Click for larger Image)
Description
13/06/2005
Day 0
This photo was taken just after I came out of surgery. The anasthetic left me feeling very groggy. When I first woke up, the pain was the worst I've ever felt, it took a while to get it under control but the staff at the hospital were excellent.
14/06/2005
Day 1
Day 1 Post OP. I was a bit shocked about how much hair was shaved off, so far it's not been too painful. I wasn't expecting the scar to be that big.
16/06/2005
Day 3
Day 3 Post OP. My tongue feels a bit strange and everything tastes sour. My ear is numb. There's a huge bruise appearing behind my ear and down my neck. The bruise is quite sore.
18/06/2005
Day 5
Day 5 Post OP. My hair is feeling really yucky today (I can't wait to wash it). I have to learn not to frown as it really hurts the skin at the back of my head. The bruise is getting worse on my neck.
19/06/2005
Day 6
Day 6 Post OP. Ouch. The mother of all bruises has appeared behind my ear. At least my hair is starting to grow back. Scar is quite sore and very uncomfortable.
21/06/2005
Day 8
Day 8 Post OP. My stitches were taken out today. I was surprised that the scar flattened out so much. Most of the discomfort has gone as well, it feels much better now.
24/06/2005
Day 11
Day 11 Post OP. I am really surprised how well the scar has settled down compared to day 1. The bruising is going now and I'm now able to sleep on my implanted side. I can now shower and wash my own hair again **YAY**
25/06/2005
Day 12
Day 12 Post OP. It's looking better every day. The swelling on the back of my head has gone down a lot and I can now feel the small bump where the implant is. My tongue feels almost normal now although sweet things don't taste as they should.
26/06/2005
Day 13
Day 13 Post OP. You can still see some light bruising around the scar and back of my ear but the bottom of the scar seems to have disappeared into the creases that were always there. It feels a lot better without all the swelling.
29/06/2005
Day 16
Day 16 Post OP. The bruising has almost gone completely and you can barely see the scar. My hair is growing back nicely although it is a bit itchy where it's short.
30/06/2005
Day 17
Day 17 Post OP. Switch on day! I had been getting quite excited about the switch on and I had really no idea what to expect.
01/07/2005
Day 18
Day 18 Post OP. My last day to day photo of the scar, my hair is growing back nicely. It's a massive difference in less than 20 days, I'm very happy!
13/06/06
One Year
One Year Later. I think it is very difficult to see my scar now and my hair has grown four inches since it was shaved for the operation. The implant is now a year old although it was not switched on till the 30th.
13/06/06
One Year
One Year Later. With the processor on.
15/07/06
Another New Processor!
The silver processor was causing an allergic reaction possibly because of the metallic paint!!
15/07/06
It takes a bit of getting used too!
I think this one actually blends in nicely with my hair and is not as noticeable.

Please feel free to leave your comments

Here!




All Images and Text © 2005
Back to the main Home Page