JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Cochlear implant success. Gemma Heath, aged ten, laughs while holding her ears after hearing for the first time in her life. She has received a cochlear implant (CI) for her deaf- ness. Now 4-6 weeks after the surgery, the implant is being switched on. At this stage she has no sense of what the sounds in her head mean. The CI procedure is performed on profoundly deaf patients unable to be helped by conventional hearing aids. Electrodes from the implant are inserted into the cochlear of the inner ear, enabling sound impulses to reach the brain. Externally a transmitter and microphone are worn. The CI gives an awareness of sounds and assists the patient to lip-read.
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