It’s been known for a while now that implantation of a cochlear implant before regular speech learning age is critical for development in deaf children. Ivanhoe.com is reporting that new research shows that a second implant can really improve outcomes due to the ability to perform binaural processing…
In a study of 55 deaf children who received a second implant several years after their first, investigators report the children were able to adapt to two-sided hearing over time, as it takes time for the brain to adjust to two sound signals.
“Using two ears helps with you with acoustic functions in complex environments, such as when you’re trying to listen to important sounds in noisy environments or when you’re trying to localize sounds,” Ruth Litovsky, Ph.D., told Ivanhoe. As an expert in binaural hearing, or hearing with two ears, Dr. Litovsky wanted to know more about the actual benefits of having two cochlear implants.
“I think the bottom line question is, ‘What would I do with my own child,'” said Dr. Roberson. “I would definitely have two implants.”
Cool stuff…particularly if you’re a manufacturer of cochlear implants…or a deaf child born sometime in the next few years.
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