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Cochlear Implant Surgery- Best Option for Hearing Loss

Deafness & Hearing Loss

Both adults and children depend on hearing for their ability to perform daily activities - be it school or work. One needs hearing to process information in the environment and to communicate using speech. Moreover, hearing helps in localizing, detecting, and discriminating sounds produced in the surroundings.


According to the World Health Organization, hearing loss is one of the leading global diseases.  People with hearing loss can only hear some of the sounds and speech in the surroundings. While deaf people cannot understand speech but can hear a few sounds. 

There are many causes of hearing loss which include loud sound exposure, infections or diseases, accidental trauma, ototoxic drugs, aging, and hereditary. These losses adversely affect one’s ability to work and process sound.

The treatment options available for hearing loss include speech therapy, hearing aids, and cochlear implants.

Cochlear Implants and Cochlear Implant Surgery

Cochlear implant surgery is the treatment option for the rehabilitation of patients with deafness or hearing loss.

A cochlear implant is an electronic device that provides a sense of sound to a person with severe hearing loss or profoundly deaf. The implant consists of two portions: an external portion sits behind the ear and the other portion is surgically placed under the skin.

Cochlear Implant Surgery Procedure

The procedure is performed under general anesthesia. After the anesthesia has taken effect, the surgeon makes a small incision behind the ear. Anteriorly, the bone is exposed to the level of the ear canal and the receiver of the implant is inserted in the place created in the bone posteriorly. 

The implant is thus positioned behind the skin and muscles of the ear. In any case, the eardrum and the ear canal remain undisturbed during the entire surgery. A small incision is then made in the cochlea and through cochleostomy, the electrode is inserted. After the complete insertion of the implant, the incisions are then closed and dressed.

The cochlear implant has the following parts:

·           The microphone that picks up sound from the surroundings.
·       A Speech processor helps in selection and arrangement of sounds picked by the microphone.
·        Transmitter and receiver/stimulator receives signals from the speech processor and converts them into electric impulses.
·        The electrode array is a group of electrodes that collects these impulses from the stimulator and sends them to different parts of the auditory nerve.

The missing function of the inner hair cells can be restored using these implants. This transforms the acoustic signal to electrical stimuli to activate the auditory nerve fibers. With cochlear implants, children achieve language development and a near to normal speech provided deafness is detected at an early stage and the implantation is quickly performed.      

Candidates for Cochlear Implant

Adults and children who are deaf or severely hard-of-hearing can get cochlear implants. In the mid-1980s, the FDA approved cochlear implants to treat hearing loss in adults. In case of eligible children, FDA approved cochlear implants since 2000 at the age for 12 months.

Many studies have revealed that children who get these implants before 18 months of age have developed good language skills as compared to children who get implants at a later age.

Recovery & Rehabilitation

The person with an implant may experience mild to moderate pain in and around the ear and a headache for a few days. Post surgery the recovery period consists of the waiting time for the incision to heal completely. This period usually consists of 3 to 6 weeks.

Rehabilitation consists of training the brain in order to understand sounds picked up by the implant. As the brain will need time to recognize the sounds, the training process should be ongoing and the results can be achieved by continuously wearing the speech processor during the waking hours.

Benefits & Risks of Cochlear Implants:

Some of the benefits of the implants:

·        The person may hear speech at a normal level and understand speech without lip reading
·        It will be easier for the person to hear the TV and talk on the phone
·        The person will be able to pick up different sounds
·        The person will be able to control his/her own voice so that others can understand

Although cochlear implant surgery is very safe, every surgical operation comes with risks. Some of the complications are:

·        A nerve injury or nerve damage that affects the face
·        Balance problems or dizziness
·        Tinnitus
·        Infection of the implant or it doesn’t work
·        Meningitis 

Cochlear Implant Surgery in India

The first cochlear implant surgery was performed in 1994. India has the credit of performing the first sophisticated contour cochlear implant surgery in the whole of Asia. Contour Advance, The latest cochlear implant technology, is available in India at around $ 22500.

As hearing loss treatment is a global issue, many medical tourists visit India to get services from the best doctors. The cochlear implant specialists in India are well-qualified and experienced. Additionally, these implants are productive and cost-effective. The hearing issue is treated successfully if you are in the hands of the best doctor in India.

The best doctors in India suggest each medical tourist with the best treatment after having a proper physical examination, audiogram or diagnostic tests. The best hospitals for cochlear implant surgery in India has state-of-the-art facilities and testing procedures.

The few procedures of cochlear and hearing implants available in India are:

·        Cochlear Implants (CI)
·        Born Anchored Hearing Aid (BAHA) Implant
·        Vibrant Sound-bridge (VSB) Implant
·        Auditory Brainstem (ABI) Implant

Moreover, private companies creating these devices have set up a toll-free helpline for hearing impaired people wherein the concerned family members can call and ask for any assistance related to these implants. The helpline consultants assist these families in fixing appointments with relevant audiologists and doctors.

cost of cochlear implant surgery in India

The Cost of Cochlear Implant Surgery in India

The cost of cochlear implant surgery in India starts from USD 13,000 and depends on various factors like the type of implant, surgeon, and the facility chosen.

Despite several advancements and discoveries in the world of cochlear implants, the cost in India is less than a fourth of the cost of cochlear implant in other countries around the world. As far as the cost of the surgery in the US is concerned it is around USD 100,000.

Considering this cost in India, many tourists are flocking to India for cochlear implant surgery. Also, there are many patients, who have shared their successful journeys in India with a handsome saving on their treatment budget. 

Success Rate of Cochlear Implant Surgery in India

In India, cochlear implant surgery is considered a super-specialization now. Many qualified surgeons are working in this field to come up with break-through advancements. This has raised post-surgical success rates substantially. There is 90-95% of hearing and language improvement.

Most people who get cochlear implant surgery in India can hear and have conversations without lip reading. They can also speak on telephones very freely. The results of the procedure have been better in the case of young children accompanied by proper post-operative therapy and rehabilitation.

About IndiCure

IndiCure is the leading and most renowned medical tourism company in India offering cochlear implant surgery with best ENT surgeons at most affordable cost. You can write to us t or call us at +91-932-003-6777 (India) or +1-877-270-2448 ( US Toll-Free)