JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Cochlear implant patient. Gemma Heath, aged ten, laughs with happiness to be able to hear for the first time in her life. She has received a cochlear implant (CI) for her deafness. Now 4-6 weeks after the surgery, the implant has been 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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