Psychoacoustic aspects (Part 4)

And once again I've been taught a lesson. After nearly 3 decades in audiology an the hearing instrument industry, I thought there is not a lot that can surprise me anymore. WRONG! If somebody asks me those days, "now tell me, how does your CI sound?", I start to look for comparisons from my "normal hearing" days. But to be honest, it is nearly impossible to describe the sensation to a non CI wearer. I'm also convinced that there are no two CI wearer who have a similar hearing experience with their CI.


As a foundation for this blog I'd like to once again present my audiogram that was taken shortly after my sudden hearing loss in Octobre 2019 plus a image of myself wearing not only the speech processor but also the ComPilot. The ComPilot (streaming device) has become one of my most important tools when it comes to adaptation and training.

Dr. Claudia Candreia has told me already during the informational consultation preparing for the operation that, in order for the CI to be useful my right ear has to become my dominant ear once again once the implant is inserted and operational. This makes complete sense, especially knowing that about 70% of what my right ear perceives is being transferred to the auditory cortex in the left hemisphere of my brain. Speech as we know is perceived, understood and reacted upon by the Wernicke area in combination with the Broca Area. So far so good, but how should my right implanted ear become the dominant ear when my left ear is hearing close to normal?

For those of you who'd like to review the peripheral auditory pathways once again, I can strongly recommend the Youtube channel "Ninja Nerds Lectures".  Thanks Ninja Nerds for letting me use your channel for my blog!

In the table above of a Literature Review of Anandhan Dhanasingh et al.the distribution of the Spiral Ganglion Cell Bodies is shown in correlation of number of cells and frequencies. Thank you for letting me use the table for my blog!

I took the freedom to overlay the table above with the CT Image (mirrored vertically) that was taken shortly after the insertion of my implant. During the frequency matching üprocedure I realized that the lowest frequency that I perceive with my implant is around 600Hz. How closely the table matches with my personal experience is quite astonishing!


How can I succeed, in making my right, implanted ear, the dominant ear again?

The answer to this question is not an easy one - as a matter of fact, I'm not there yet! But it is obvious to me that this goal can only be accomplished by continuously wearing the CI-Speech Processor and exercice with it as often as possible.


The continuously wearing of my CI is no big deal to me as I'm wearing it roughly from 7am to 9pm and often longer;-)

For the training I use manly the ComPilot. For those of you that don't know the ComPilot, it is a streaming device that transfers Bluetooth signals from any device directly to the cochlear implant. This allows me to only hear the CI input without using my better ear.


How exactly I organize my training and what kind of experiences that offers to me - I will tell you in my next Blog.


Until then - Thank you very much for your interest

Your hearing car specialist, cyborg and CI-Punk - René

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